Southern finds fourth home win over Hampton

By Brooke Buerck, Sports Reporter

The SIU men’s basketball team returned to Banterra Center on Wednesday night for a match up against Hampton University, taking down the Pirates 75-53. 

Southern (5-7) took the court tonight for their second game out of three total for the week.

The Salukis started off their week at University of Missouri on Dec. 15, dropping a 64-48 match up to the Tigers.

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Prior to tonight, Southern hadn’t played a home game since Dec. 4, when they defeated Norfolk State University 76-59. 

SIU’s high scorer for the night was freshman guard Marcus Domask, who dropped 19 points to go with six assists and three rebounds.

Two others joined Domask in double-digit performances: graduate assistant Ronnie Suggs Jr. and sophomore forward Sekou Dembele both had ten points each.

Tonight’s game was Dembele’s career best as a Saluki, as he also pulled down five rebounds.

Freshman guard Karrington Davis and sophomore guard Harwin Francois both had nine points as well to help out Southern, Francois with all of his baskets coming from the three-point range.

Freshman guard Lance Jones helped get the Salukis into position on offense by dishing out eight assists.

Leading Hampton’s scoring efforts were senior guard Dondre Griffin and senior guard Greg Heckstall, who both had 14 points each.

Southern Illinois grabbed an early 19-10 lead over Hampton with 9:00 left in the first half.

Hampton’s Griffin helped get the Pirates back in the game with two made three’s and two free throws, decreasing their deficit to 21-18.

The Pirates (4-7) took the lead at 26-25 with a Heckstall layup with less than three minutes in the half.

Domask and Francois worked to finish out the half on an 11-6 scoring run, Domask with a jumper and two free throws and Francois with a three, to take the 34-28 lead. 

Domask led SIU with 11 points in the half, while Francois added six.

SIU was 10-29 from the field on shooting, while finishing 10-11 at the free throw line. Hampton made 11 out of 25 of their shots.

Hampton looked to work their way back into the game in the second half, down only 34-32 after two jumpers from Hackstall and sophomore center Pierre Sow.

SIU took off from here on a 10-point scoring run, with two layups from Dembele and four more points from Suggs Jr. 

The Salukis wouldn’t back down from there, outscoring the Pirates 41-25 in the second half. 

Southern shot at 65% to finish out the game, while Hampton only made 8 out of 23 shots at 35%.

The Salukis will stay at home for their next match up against the Southeast Missouri State University Redhawks on Dec. 21. Tip-off is set for 3:00 p.m.

Sports reporter Brooke Buerck can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @bbuerck25.

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