INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A 27-7 run to start the second half broke open a close game as Eastern Kentucky beat IUPUI, 73-64, on Saturday at Indiana Farmers Coliseum.
The Colonels (5-3) hit their first five shots of the second half and seven of their first eight. By the time the Jaguars (2-7) made their fourth basket of second half with nine minutes left in the game, EKU had 20-point lead.
Eastern led by two at the break. Ja’Mill Powell scored the first five points of the second half. Timmy Knipp’s three-pointer from the left wing made it eight straight points to start the half. Jaylen Babb-Harrison’s three from the right wing was EKU’s fifth field goal on five second half attempts and pushed the lead to double figures, 47-37.
Four points by Eric Stutz, a triple from the left corner by Jonathan Hood and a put-back basket by Denzel Richardson polished off the Eastern Kentucky run to start the second half and gave the visitors a 61-39 lead.
Archie Mason’s three-pointer with 9:01 remaining was just IUPUI’s fourth field goal of the second half. The long ball started a stretch of 12 unanswered as the Jaguars mounted a late comeback attempt. What would become a 17-3 run, got the home squad as close as eight, 64-56, with 2:26 left to play.
Corey Walden scored a game-high 20 points for the Colonels he also had seven rebounds, six assists and four steals. Eric Stutz added 17 points on 7-of-8 shooting and five rebounds. He became the 27th player in program history to grab 500 career rebounds.
EKU shot 59 percent in the second half and 55 percent for the game. The Colonels entered the game first in the nation in turnover margin, but committed two more turnovers (21-19) than IUPUI. However, Eastern out-scored the Jaguars 26-16 off turnovers.
Eastern Kentucky out-rebounded IUPUI 28-23.
Eastern will face East Tennessee State University at home on Tuesday. Tip-off at McBrayer Arena is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Eric Stutz needed two rebounds to become the 27th player in school history to grab 500 rebounds in his career. He got his 500th on an offensive rebound with 4:24 left in the game. The senior finished with five rebounds.
Eric Stutz is 70 points away from becoming the 13th player in Eastern Kentucky to score 1,000 points and grab 500 rebounds.
EKU entered the game first in the nation in turnover margin (+13.9) while IUPUI entered the contest averaging 17.8 turnovers per game. The Jaguars finished with 19 turnovers, but EKU gave it away 21 times for a -2 margin.
Eastern began the day second in the nation in steals per game (12.3 spg). The Colonels had 14 steals on Saturday.
Six different players had led EKU in scoring in its previous six games.
Corey Walden now needs 62 more steals to break the EKU career record of 221.
The win was EKU’s second on the road this season. Colonels are now 2-2 on the road.
EKU now leads the all-time series 2-1.