With less than a second on the clock, Indiana State’s Jake Kelly completed a traditional three-point play to secure a 70-69 Sycamores’ victory over visiting Missouri State (15-4, 7-1) here Wednesday, snapping a nine-game Bears’ winning streak and knotting the teams atop the Missouri Valley Conference standings.
Kelly’s game-winner came on the heels of what was an otherwise-solid finish for MSU which built a five-point lead on a jumper by Jermaine Mallett with 2:14 to play. Nafis Ricks scored eight of his team-high 17 points in the final six minutes, but missed a driving shot at the rim with 13 seconds to go.
Down 69-67, Indiana State (12-7, 7-1) then called timeout with 4.9 seconds to go and set up the game-winning play which was reviewed for nearly five minutes with no time showing on the arena’s game clock.
Joining Ricks in double figures for MSU was Mallett with 14, while Adam Leonard scored 13, and Kyle Weems added 10. Ricks also had a game-high 9 rebounds and three assists.
The Bears did not make a three-pointer in the second half, but were 15-of-17 (.882) in the second half to close out a 21-for-24 effort night from the foul line. MSU also had just three turnovers in the second half and finished with 10.
Missouri State rallied in the second half as RJ Mahurin and Aaron Carter unleashed five three-pointers over an eight-minute stretch. Carter’s trey with 7:26 to go put ISU up 53-48, before MSU went on a 19-9 run over the next five minutes.
MSU finished 22-for-49 (.449) from the field and 4-of-13 (.308) from beyond the arc. Rebounds were even at 30 apiece.