Daily Egyptian

Salukis start streak on milestone win

By Aaron Graff, @Aarongraff_DE

Men’s basketball coach Barry Hinson surpassed former SIU coach Rich Herrin in wins in Missouri Valley Conference games with his latest.

SIU (9-11, 2-5) defeated the Bradley Braves (6-14, 1-6) 70-59 for its second consecutive MVC win.

Hinson is fifth in the MVC with a 112-93 record all-time.

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“I never have been nor will I be a trophy guy, but I will say this: I love this conference,” Hinson said. “I love that I’m apart of it and I got to achieve something [Wednesday] because of a lot of great players over the last 12 years.”

The Salukis led the Braves 34-33 at half. No team had more than a 4-point lead in the first half.

Both teams combined for 11 three-pointers in the half. Both teams had a better three-point shooting percentage than a field goal percentage in the half.

“Everyone is wondering why our three-point shooting was so good,” Hinson said. “I called [New England Patriots coach Bill] Belichick [Wednesday] and said, ‘Hey, what do you think, should we deflate the balls?’ … I did not call Belichick, that is a joke.”

The Braves took a 43-39 lead in the second half, before SIU went on a 10-0 run and cruised to the victory.

SIU lost to the Braves 63-44 on Jan. 3, but the Saluki offense was not as quiet this time around. The Salukis matched the 44 points with more than 13:30 to play.

Junior guard Anthony Beane led all scorers with 16 points. He also led the team with 6 rebounds.

“Coach said it’s going to be one of those games where the guards have to get to the ball,” Beane said.

Sophomore guard Tyler Smithpeters followed with 12 points. Smithpeters made his first start since Dec. 31 against Missouri State.

Hinson said the team overall did not have a good practice before the game, but Smithpeters had two good practices.

Braves’ junior guard Tramique Sutherland led his team with 13 points. Bradley had three players in double figures. Junior guard Ka’Darryl Bell and freshman forward Josh Cunningham both had 10 points.

The Salukis play the Evansville Purple Aces (14-5, 4-3) at 3 p.m. Saturday at Ford Center in Evansville, Ind.

Aaron Graff can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3311 ext. 256

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