The Morehead State men's basketball team used a 40-21 rebounding advantage en route to a 65-54 victory over Ohio Valley Conference opponent Jacksonville State on Saturday (Feb. 1) afternoon at MSU’s Johnson Arena.
The Eagles, who have now won seven of their last 10 games, improve to 15-9 overall, 6-3 in league play and 8-3 at home. The Gamecocks, who have dropped six of their last nine, fall to 10-15 overall, 4-6 in the conference and 2-12 on the road.
"I'm proud of the way our young men bounced back after a very tough loss to Belmont (on Wednesday)," Head Coach Sean Woods said. "We had to play again without our starting point guard, but we are pulling together and finding ways to win."
Morehead State continues to lead the conference total boards and rebounding margin. The Eagles have only been outrebounded once this season. MSU also posted upper hands of 12-4 on the offensive glass and 10-4 in second-chance points.
"We've done well in the rebounding department this season, and we need to keep that up," Woods said. "Games can be won or lost on the boards, and today was a good example of that. I thought we really attacked the glass on both ends of the floor."
Senior Chad Posthumus led the Eagles with a game-high 12 rebounds, while Reader added eight. Posthumus has now reached double-figure boards 16 times this year and 22 times in his career. Junior Angelo Warner led MSU's balanced scoring attack with 14 points on 8-of-9 from the free-throw line. It marked his 22nd double-figures effort this season and the 51st of his career.
Freshman Greg Dotson and junior Billy Reader chipped in 10 points apiece. Junior Jordan Percell added nine points in just 13 minutes. All eight Eagles who played scored at least one basket. Six players scored more than eight points. Junior Avery Moore paced the Gamecocks with 13 points, while junior D.J. Felder added 12.
Warner and sophomore Brent Arrington contributed four assists apiece. Morehead State was credited with 13 helpers and recorded a 36-24 advantage in the paint.
MSU knocked down 48 percent (23-of-48) from the field, including 3-of-7 from outside the arc. The Eagles also drilled 73 percent (16-of-22) from the free-throw line. Jacksonville State was held to 39 percent (19-of-49) from the floor, including 27 percent (6-of-22) from three-point range. The Gamecocks made 67 percent (10-of-15) from the foul line.
Jacksonville State, which opened the contest with advantages of 9-3 and 18-11, led for most of the first half. Morehead State grabbed the lead after an 11-2 run early in the second half and had its largest lead at 51-40 with 6:48 left.
Morehead State improves to 68-16 (.809) at home over the last six seasons. The Eagles have also matched their 2012-13 win total with seven regular-season contests remaining.
MSU is idle until Saturday's (Feb. 8) 11 a.m. contest at OVC rival Eastern Kentucky. The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU and is a re-match from the Eagles' Jan. 11 home defeat.
"It was good to get another home victory today," Woods added. "Now, we have a full week to prepare for a very good Eastern Kentucky team. We are excited about the challenge of playing in their gym and another opportunity to be on national TV."