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Indiana State (11-3) at Drake (10-4)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, January 8, 8:05 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Knapp Center (7.152) -- Des Moines, Iowa. Television: MC 22. Home Record: Indiana State 5-0, Drake 5-1. Away Record: Indiana State 5-2, Drake 3-2. Neutral Record: Indiana State 1-1, Drake 2-1. Conference Record: Indiana State 2-0, Drake 1-1. Series Record: Indiana State leads, 40-37.
GAME NOTES: Two of the top three scoring teams in the Missouri Valley Conference mix it up on Wednesday night, as the Indiana State Sycamores take on the Drake Bulldogs at the Knapp Center.
The Sycamores (78.2 ppg) lead the conference, while the Bulldogs (74.6 ppg) are just behind eighth-ranked Wichita State among the MVC's offensive leaders.
Indiana State is riding a four-game win streak, which matches a season-best. Last Saturday, Khristian Smith notched 27 points and the Sycamores defeated the Evansville Purple Aces, 81-62. Smith shot 11-of-13 from the field. Dawon Cummings (22 points), Jake Odum (14) and Justin Gant (10) also reached double figures. It was the fifth time this season the Sycamores held an opponent to 63 points or less. Indiana State was 14-2 last season when holding foes to that mark. Indiana State is 45-4 when holding teams to 63 points or less under head coach Greg Lansing.
Odum (12.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg) leads a well-balanced offensive attack for the Sycamores, as five players average double figures in scoring. Manny Arop (12.6 ppg), Gant (12.3 ppg), Smith (10.6 ppg) and Cummings (10.5 ppg) are part of a team that leads the MVC in field goal percentage (.497). While the offensive numbers are impressive, the Sycamores need work on defense as they're allowing foes to shoot an MVC-best 45.5 percent. To offset this, ISU is making a conference-best 42.9 percent of its 3-point attempts.
Drake had its four-game win streak snapped with a 68-57 loss at Bradley last Saturday. Aaron Hawley notched a career-high 27 points for the Bulldogs. Hawley shot 9-of-13 from the floor, but none of his teammates reached double figures.
Richard Carter (17.7 ppg) is Drake's leading scorer, although he was limited to eight points (six coming at the foul line) against Bradley. Jordan Daniels (15.0 ppg) was held to six points in the loss. Drake has played well defensively by holding opponents to 65.9 ppg, which is second-best in the MVC. The Bulldogs (.403) are right behind Indiana State in 3-point percentage.
An Indiana State win would move the team to 3-0 in MVC play for the first time since 2007-08, and improve it to 2-0 on the road in MVC action for the first time since 1978-79. The Sycamores have beaten Drake in seven of the last 10 meetings, but the Bulldogs have been prolific from 3-point range (.461) over their last four games and seem primed to get back on the winning track. Drake is 25-11 all-time in Des Moines against the Sycamores.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Drake 75, Indiana State 74
01/08 10:32:31 ET
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