SIU men’s basketball wins Sunday afternoon

By Evan Jones, @EvanJones_DE

The SIU men’s basketball team (2-0) beat Florida A&M (1-1) 81-51 on Sunday.

This is the first time SIU has started 2-0 in a season since 2012.

“The score of the game should not dictate our tempo,” coach Barry Hinson said. “My frustration is because I know we can do better.”


At the start of the first half, SIU offense was led by senior guard Anthony Beane. Beane tallied eight of the Salukis 12 points and made it to the free throw line three times.

“I’m glad we came out the way came out,” Beane said. “We came out aggressive and that was the main thing.”

Beane hit back-to-back three pointers to give the Salukis a 23-11 lead with nine minutes remaining in the half. It was the Salukis’ biggest lead to that point.

In the half, there was eight three pointers. Both teams shot four for 13 from behind the arc.

The Salukis led at the half 39-26. A loose ball foul was called on junior guard Tyler Smithpeters as time expired in the half. He finished the half with three fouls and one point.

Beane continued to hit shots in the second half. He had 20 points with 15 minutes remaining in the game.

Junior point guard Mike Rodriguez started for the Salukis. In the second half he penetrated the Rattlers’ defense and dished the ball to Bola Olaniyan for a dunk to put the Salukis up 53-38.

“The day Mike came to come visit, I was able to see his style of play,” Olanyan said. “Mike does a better job to find me and it makes it easy.”

Because of foul trouble, Smithpeters didn’t check back in until less than 12 minutes remained in the game. He made two three-pointers in quick succession shortly after he checked in.

He finished the game with seven points.

With 7:58 left in the game Florida A&M’s leading scorer Francois Lewis fouled out of the game. He left with 15 points and seven rebounds.

Rodriguez had another high-flying assist with five minutes remaining in the game. He lofted a high pass near the rim and freshman guard Armon Fletcher put it down with an alley-oop.

Rodriguez finished the game with six assists. Fletcher finished the game with 11 points and three assists.

By the game’s end, Beane led the Saluki’s offense with 20 points. Olaniyan completed a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds.

SIU men’s basketball plays at 7 p.m. Wednesday in SIU Arena against Kent State.

Evan Jones can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @EvanJones_DE