March 01, 2007
#14 USI makes defensive stand to win 57-45
Eagles hold the Flyers to seven points in second half
#14 Southern Indiana (26-5): 57
Lewis (15-13): 45
EVANSVILLE, Ind.— The 14th-ranked University of Southern Indiana men's basketball team overcame a 17-point first half deficit with a second half defensive stand to defeat Lewis University, 57-45, in the first round of the GLVC Tournament at Roberts Stadium in Evansville, Indiana, Thursday evening. USI, the top seed from the GLVC West Division, goes to 26-5 overall, while Lewis, the number four seed from the East Division, falls to 15-13.
The Screaming Eagles struggled in the first half, falling behind 26-9 with 10:15 left in the opening half. USI, which shot just 30.3 percent in the first half, began to chip away at the lead and cut the margin to nine points, 35-26, with 2:16 left in the half. Lewis put the lead back to double-digits with a three-pointer and went into the locker room with a 38-26 lead.
In the second half, the Eagles put on display one of the best defensive performances in the history of the program. USI held Lewis to just seven points, to 16.7 percent from the field (3-18), and did not allow a three-point field. The Eagles also forced the Flyers into 17 second half turnovers.
Lewis went without a field goal or a free throw in the final 8:53 with USI outscoring the Flyers 16-0 to earn the 57-45 victory.
The Eagles had three players score in double-figures, led by senior forward Geoff Van Winkle (Ferdinand, Indiana) and senior guard Melvin Hall (Evansville, Indiana) with 14 points each. Senior forward Nick Brooks (Robinson, Illinois) rounded out the double-figure scorers with 10 points.
USI returns to action in the GLVC Tournament Saturday at 2:30 p.m. against the winner of the Quincy University, the number three seed from the West Division, and Saint Joseph's College, the number two seed from the East Division.
Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information