Missouri State (7-16) at Northern Iowa (12-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Tuesday, February 5, 8 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: McLeod Center (6,650) -- Cedar Falls, Iowa.
Television: ESPN3.com. Home Record: Missouri St. 6-6, UNI 10-2. Away Record:
Missouri St. 1-8, UNI 2-5. Neutral Record: Missouri St. 0-2, UNI 0-4.
Conference Record: Missouri State 5-6, UNI 5-6. Series Record: Missouri State
GAME NOTES: Hitting the road where they have won only once this season, the
Missouri State Bears try their luck again as they take on the Northern Iowa
Panthers in Missouri Valley Conference play at the McLeod Center.
The Bears, who have topped only Drake (77-65) on the road this time last
month, have actually won two of their last three outings overall, thanks to a
narrow 62-61 triumph over Evansville this past Saturday afternoon. However,
even with the victory Missouri State is still one game under .500 in league
play at 5-6.
Over on the other side the Panthers, who are 43-17 in conference play all-time
in this building, are just like Missouri State at the moment with five wins in
11 chances against the rest of the MVC. Also in action over the weekend, UNI
picked up a surprising win against Wichita State, 57-52, to snap a two-game
As far as the all-time series is concerned, Missouri State is ahead of the
Panthers by a 40-23 count, thanks in part to a 63-51 win in the most recent
meeting last season. The teams have played some tight games in recent years as
prior to the 12-point win the last time out for the Bears, the previous four
meetings were all decided by just a single point.
Anthony Downing's 3-pointer with 43 seconds remaining in the second half
proved to be the difference, as Missouri State then held on for the one-point
win over Evansville on Saturday. Downing finished with just nine points as he
shot 4-of-12 from the floor, while Marcus Marshall accounted for a team-high
14 points. Off the bench, the Bears got a spark from Christian Kirk and Nathan
Scheer with 12 and 11 points, respectively. The only player to have started
all 23 games for the Bears this season, Downing is responsible for a team-best
14.2 ppg and he is also first with 64 assists and 26 steals. Marshall checks
in with 10.0 ppg, but he is shooting just under 40 percent from the floor and
that has brought the entire unit down to 41.2 percent for the season.
Against nationally-ranked Wichita State over the weekend, the Panthers held
the visitors to just five trips to the free-throw line and forced 13 turnovers
as UNI pulled out the win. Anthony James scored a team-best 16 points on 5-
of-11 shooting from the floor, while Seth Tuttle accounted for eight poi nts,
eight rebounds and four blocked shots, as the team survived 56.3 percent
accuracy at the charity stripe. For the season, the team is scoring a modest
66.9 ppg, with four players generating at least 10.0 ppg. James is responsible
for a team-best 12.4 ppg, although his mere 29.0 percent shooting behind the
3-point line is severely lacking. Defensively, the Panthers are limiting the
competition to 61.8 ppg as teams make good on only 67.7 percent at the free-
Playing at home is crucial for the Panthers because that's where most of their
success has come this season. There might be a bit of a let-down after their
upset win versus Wichita State, but still the Panthers have the defense to
take charge on Tuesday night.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Northern Iowa 64, Missouri State 57
02/05 10:31:53 ET
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