13-0 Start Sets Record as ISU tops Evansville, 80-50
Dec. 31, 2008
NORMAL, Ill. - Osiris Eldridge scored a game-high 22 points and helped Illinois State win it's school-record 13th-consecutive game in a, 80-50, victory over Evansville on Doug Collins Court at Redbird Arena Wednesday.
Illinois State's 13-0 start is the first of its kind in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) since Tulsa started the 1983-84 season with 13-consecutive wins, and surpassed the previous ISU record of 12 wins to start a season in 1977-78. Champ Oguchi (15) and Emmanuel Holloway (12) joined Eldridge in double-figures, while Dinma Odiakosa tied his career-high game with 13 rebounds. The Redbirds (13-0, 2-0 MVC) shot 29-for-62 from the field for a 46.8 percent mark in the game.
Shy Ely led the Purple Aces (9-3, 0-3 MVC) with 19 points. Evansville was 17-for-48 from the field for 35.4 percent with 21 turnovers and were out-rebounded 41-32 in the contest.
Illinois State opened the game with a 12-4 run on four-consecutive three-point baskets and led 48-22 by the half. Oguchi had two three-pointers during the opening run and put the Redbirds up 22-5 with a fastbreak dunk at 12:24.
Evansville tried to respond, but with 12 turnovers, the Purple Aces were held to 22 points in the half with no back-to-back field goals.
In the second half, Evansville tried to rally again, going 4-for-5 from the field in the first four minutes of play. However, the Redbird offense proved to be too much. With 15:53 left to play, a behind-the-back pass from Eldridge connected with Oguchi for a dunk, bringing Illinois State's lead to 55-30. Evansville cut the lead to 22 points (68-46) with 4:26 left to play, but the Redbirds could not be stopped.
The Redbirds will continue MVC play Saturday when they host Creighton at 7:05 p.m. at Redbird Arena.