With their 91 points, the Redbirds extended their streak of games
with 80-plus points to four in a row to start the season. The team
had not accomplished that since the beginning of the 1977-78
campaign, when the ’Birds also ripped off four consecutive wins when
scoring 80 or more points.
Senior Jackie Carmichael led the way
for the Redbirds with 17 points and a game-high seven rebounds, and
Bryant Allen added a season-best 16 points. Johnny Hill chipped in
11 points and Jon Ekey rounded out the quartet of Redbird players in
double figures with 10 points. Freshman point guard Kaza Keane was
held scoreless for the first time this season, but dished out a
career-high nine points in the victory for the Redbirds.
Fairleigh Dickinson jumped out to the early 3-0 lead with a
3-pointer by Melquan Bolding just over a minute into the game. The
Redbirds settled down from there and went on a quick 7-0 run over
the next 1:18 seconds to take a 7-3 advantage. Allen then tied the
game up with a 3-pointer of his own, and a tip-in by Tyler Brown and
a jumper by John Wilkins gave ISU the early advantage.
The Knights regained the lead with a 5-0 run, after a layup by
Lonnie Robinson made the score 8-7 with 15:26 left on the clock. The
back-and-forth play continued and ISU answered with a 10-2 run,
capped off on a 3-pointer by Wilkins, to take the lead back at
17-10. The Redbirds would extend that lead to 10 points at the 7:30
mark of the first half, after a pair of free throws by Brown that
made the score 28-17.
Both teams fought hard over the next few minutes and traded
baskets, before the Knights put together a 9-4 run to cut the
Redbird lead to 32-26 with 4:53 left in the first half. The Knights
ended the run with five straight points, thanks to a layup from
Bolding and a 3-pointer from Mustafaa Jones. A jumper by Mathias
Seilund then cut the lead to 34-30, but a 3-point play on a driving
layup from Hill widened the ISU lead back to seven points at 37-30
with 2:32 left in the half.
The Knights refused to back down, and a 3-pointer from the corner
by Robinson cut the lead back to four points at 37-33, before
Carmichael sank a pair of free throws to build the lead back to six
points. Allen then added a jumper with five seconds left to give ISU
a 41-33 lead headed into the locker room at halftime.
[to top of second column]
ISU came out of the locker room on a roll, scoring the first
10 points of the second half to take a 51-33 lead. Carmichael
scored on a pair of layups, and 3-pointers by Ekey and Allen
gave the Redbirds a comfortable lead to that point. The lead
would continue to grow for the ’Birds, as a layup by Jordan
Threloff extended an 8-0 run and upped the lead to 62-38, which
forced FDU head coach Greg Vetrone to call a timeout with 13:22
left in the second half.
Points continued to mount in the Redbirds’ favor, as the lead
grew to 33 points at 71-38 after a tip-in by Ekey and an alley-oop
from Brown to Carmichael extended the run to 17-0. Fairleigh
Dickinson finally snapped a scoreless streak that took 5:40 off the
clock, when Bolding scored on a fast-break layup, but the points
were answered quickly when Brown sank a pair of free throws.
ISU would lead by as much as 34 points, when Zeke Upshaw buried a
jumper from the top of the key with 4:54 left in the game to make
the score 82-48. The Redbirds would never look back, as they cruised
to the 91-58 victory.
The Redbirds will head to South Padre Island, Texas, for the
remainder of the South Padre Invitational, beginning with a matchup
against UAB on Friday. Game time is scheduled for 5 p.m.
news release received from
Illinois State University]