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Monday, Feb. 21

Alexander's record 3s, Gordon's inside game lift 'Birds

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[FEB. 21, 2005]  GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Senior Gregg Alexander buried five 3s and claimed the Illinois State career 3-point record while Lorenzo Gordon led all scorers with 22 points Saturday night at the Resch Center, as the Redbirds downed Wisconsin-Green Bay 79-69 for their third ESPN Bracket Buster win in three tries.

ISU improved its overall record to 17-9, thanks to its fourth victory in the last five road games. UW-Green Bay fell to 17-8, with only its third home defeat of the season.

Illinois State opened the scoring with two straight buckets by Gordon to take a 4-0 lead. Gordon scored eight of ISU's first 10 points as the Redbirds led the entire first frame. An 8-2 Redbird run pushed the lead to 16-8 with 11:41 left in the half. ISU took its largest lead of the half at 26-16 with 5:12 remaining but settled for a 32-25 edge at the intermission. The 'Birds outrebounded UWGB 17-8 in the initial stanza while shooting 58.3 percent from the field in the game's first 20 minutes.

The Redbirds opened the second half with a 14-4 run, thanks to a pair of Alexander 3s, to take a 46-29 edge, their largest lead of the game. The second trey gave Alexander sole ownership of Illinois State's career 3-point record, passing Tarise Bryson. Alexander ended the game with 216 career 3s. The Phoenix responded with a 13-2 run and closed the gap to six points at 48-42 with 11:11 left on the clock.

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UWGB closed the gap to five points twice, but that was as close as the Phoenix would get. ISU shot a season-best 61.4 percent from the field to keep Green Bay at bay.

Gordon posted 22 points on 7-for-13 shooting and added nine rebounds. Alexander finished with 17 points, while Vince Greene chipped in 14 tallies and eight assists. Javier Mendiburu led the Phoenix with 19 points, and Benito Flores and Matt Rohde tossed in 17 and 16 points, respectively.

The Redbirds return to Missouri Valley Conference action on Wednesday, when they travel to Bradley for the 100th meeting in the storied rivalry.

[Todd Kober, assistant athletics director, media relations, Illinois State University]

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