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Now, that is how a pre-season top-25 team is supposed to play on the road.
The Southern Illinois University Salukis picked up their first road win of the season with its 80-67 victory over Evansville University's Purple Aces thanks in large part to its hot shooting which ignited a 15-0 run to start the game.
· After only scoring 4 points on 1-for-3 shooting in SIU’s loss to Indiana State, Randal Falker showed why he was a pre-season Wooden Award candidate by stuffing the stat sheet with 16 points, nine rebounds and a team-high five assists.
· The Salukis as a whole made significant strides since their Saturday night loss to the Sycamores. SIU shot 53% from the three-point line and 59% overall.
· The Salukis sported a balanced scoring attack with eight different players scoring including Bryan Mullins and Wesley Clemmons, who chipped in with 14 points each and Matt Shaw, who added 8 points.
· After a strong first half, Shaw was held scoreless in the second half, going 0-for-7 field.
· In the 2006-07 season, the Salukis were one of the top defensive teams in all of college basketball, limiting their opponents to about 56 points per game. Tuesday night, the Salukis gave up 67 points to the Purple Aces, and are giving up almost 64 points per game in Valley play.
· I can’t come up with a number three, so that’s a good thing!
It looks like the Salukis might have to find a way to win some shootouts if they want to finish in the top three in the MVC this year. Falker, Shaw and Mullins will have to lead this team down the stretch and get some help from Clemmons, Joshua Bone and the SIU bench.
· SIU moved to 8-0 in games in which they score 63 or more points.
· SIU put up its third 80+ point effort of the season, its first since the 88-78 victory over Western Kentucky
· In its three MVC wins, SIU is averaging 78.6 points per game. In its losses, SIU is only averaging 53.3 points per game. It looks like if SIU isn’t blowing teams out, they aren’t winning the close games.
The Salukis are in action again Saturday afternoon when they host the Shockers of Wichita State University.