Salukis lose in heartbreaker against in third place game at Paradise Jam Tournament 66-64

By Joey Bernard, Staff Reporter

In the tournament’s third place deciding game, the SIU Men’s Basketball team played the Creighton Blue Jays on Monday night. The Salukis lost the game off a last second shot with one second left. That shot made the final score 66-64.

SIU was by far highlighted by junior guard Lance Jones. Jones tied for the lead in points with junior forward Marcus Domask at 14 points, going 5-12, while also leading the team in rebounds with nine, steals with three, and tied for the lead in blocks with one. Domask tied for the lead in assists with sophomore point guard Dalton Banks as well with four assists from each.

The first half was very competitive between each team, with eight total lead changes or ties throughout. SIU took control early with the first basket of the game and kept that lead for the next eight minutes, when the Blue Jays took the lead at 8-7. 


The lead got up to four points for the Blue Jays at 11-7, but SIU stayed with it when they went on a 9-2 run to take the lead once again at 16-13. Creighton stepped on the gas once again and went on a 8-2 run of their own to take the lead at 21-18. SIU would tie it soon at 21 all, and after a couple baskets back and forth between teams, the half ended on a last second jump shot made by Creighton to take a 4-point lead into the half at 32-28.

Coming back from the half, Creighton’s lead grew up to nine points twice early after making the first five points coming back at 37-28 and at 39-30. A tough effort by SIU made the game competitive again after making the next 9 points and went on an 11-2 run to tie the game up again at 39-all and 41 all. A steal by senior guard Ben Coupet Jr led to a dunk by him to give SIU the lead at 45-44 soon after. 

The Salukis managed to hang onto the lead for quite a while and managed their largest lead of the night at 60-52 and 62-54 with less than four minutes in the contest. However, a clutch run for Creighton earned them the next 10 points and they earned the lead after a steal that turned into an easy layup to take the lead at 64-62. 

With 39 seconds left and a chance to tie or take the lead, Domask went for a jump-shot to tie it and made it with only five seconds left for Creighton. After a long hard thought timeout by Creighton, they came up with a plan to get the ball down the court for freshman guard Ryan Nembhard to make the game-winning basket and earned Creighton the win on the night at 66-64.

The win gave Creighton a third place rating in the Paradise Jam tournament and handed SIU their third loss on the young season. The Salukis will look to bounce back on Black Friday, November 26 at 7 p.m when they host the Alcorn State Braves after their Thanksgiving break.

Sports reporter Joseph Bernard can be reached at [email protected] or on twitter @Jojobernard2001.

To stay up to date on all your southern Illinois news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.