Justin Maskus, Athletic Media Relations Director
JOPLIN, Mo. – The 15th-ranked Missouri Southern men’s basketball team utilized a strong second-half and cruised to a 104-90 win over visiting Upper Iowa today on Robert Corn Court inside the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.
Southern (10-1) got a double-double from Cam Martin as he scored 37 points and pulled down 10 rebounds, going 10-of-14 from the field and 17-of-18 from the free-throw line. The 17 free throws were just three from the single-game MSSU record.
Parker Jennings scored 18 points on 5-of-8 from long-range, while Reggie Tharp added 14 points and six assists. Enis Memic had 12 points, while Kinzer Lambert scored 11. Elyjah Clark just missed out in a triple-double with seven points, nine rebounds and eight assists.
Upper Iowa (5-6) had three score in double-figures, led by 22 points from Kyle Haber, 20 from Chris Olson and 19 from Jareese Williams.
The Lions started on fire from the field, especially from long-range. Southern led 13-0 with 16:26 left in the first half, going 5-for-7 from the field and 3-for-5 from long-range and forcing two UIU timeouts in the process. The Lions led 21-5 with 14:22 left, but went cold from the field and the Peacocks rattled off a 9-2 run to get within seven (23-16) with 9:10 left in the half.
A three-point play from Martin with 7:20 on the clock, stopped the run and started a 7-0 run for the Lions that saw Southern lead 30-16 with 5:57 left in the half. UIU, however, closed the half on a 20-6 run and both teams went into the locker room, tied at 36.
Upper Iowa scored the first four points of the second half to lead 40-36 with 19:22 left. Southern, from that point, went on a tear and led 59-44 after a three from Jennings had the Lions on a 23-4 run.
Back-to-back threes from Jennings and Lambert gave the Lions a 20-point lead (73-53) with 11:15 left in the half. A pair of free throws from Jennings with just under three to go put the Lions over 100 (101-84) for the fourth time this year as Southern eased to the win.
The Lions shot 48 percent from the floor, 54 percent in the second half. Southern hit 81 percent of its free throws and had a 40-35 rebound advantage. The Lions had a 23-9 advantage in second-chance points and 15-4 advantage in fast-break points.
Southern will be off for the Christmas holiday and will return on December 31 when the Lions host John Brown at 5:30 pm in the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.