TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — The Indiana State men's basketball team (16-11, 9-7 MVC) rallied late behind junior RJ Mahurin's seventh career four-point play but the Indiana State basketball team fell to the Shockers of Wichita State (23-5, 12-4 MVC) 66-62 Tuesday inside Hulman Center.
Sophomore forward Justin Gant got the Sycamores on the board first with trey to give Indiana State a 3-0 lead after forcing a Shocker shot clock violation on the Shockers first possesion.
The Shockers responded with a 5-0 run but after a steal junior Dawon Cummings tied the game back up for the Sycamores with a fast break dunk to bring the crowd to its feet.
Neither team was able to get a their offense going early on in the first half with neither team leading by more than three points in the opening 13 minutes but the Sycamores were aggressive on the boards gaining a 15-8 advantage over the Shockers.
With just under four minutes remaining in the half the Shockers knocked down a three-pointer to take a 19-18 lead and then hits a pair of free throws to jump out to their largest lead of the game at 21-18 over the Sycamores.
The Sycamores answered with a three-pointer by junior Manny Arop to cut the lead 22-21 with just under two minutes to play in the half and after a Shocker basket, junior RJ Mahurin tied the game up at 24 with trey from the corner.
Both teams then traded free throws and at half time the score was all knotted up at 25-25.
Defense controled the opening eight minutes of the second half with both teams trading baskets and misses. With just over 12 minutes remaining, the Shockers jumped out to the largest lead of the game by either team at four at 38-34. Arop responded with a pair of free throws on the other end to cut it 38-36 with just under 12 minutes remaining in regulation.
After a Wichita State layup, a pair of Mahurin free throws and Arop and Jake Odum layups the Sycamores stormed back to retake the lead at 42-40 and re-energize the crowd. The Shockers responded, however, with a 6-0 run of their own to take the lead back at 46-42, forcing a Sycamore timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, Odum answered the Shocker run with three-pointer from the top of the key to cut the lead to one. Wichita State hit a three of their own on the other end but Odum was fouled on a quick layup in transition and hit one of two free throws to once again make it a one possession game.
With just under five minutes remaining to play the Shockers converted on a traditional three-point play to jump out to a five point lead, the largest of the game by either team. Odum answered back on the other end with a layup but could not covert the three point play.
The Shockers jumped out to their largest lead of the game at eight with 2:20 remaining in the game off a layup but Odum hit a layup and was fouled to cut the Shocker lead to 59-53 with 1:36 showing on the clock.
The Sycamores continued to battle and with 34 seconds remaining, Mahurin recorded his seventh career four-point play to cut the Shocker lead to 62-59. The Shockers hit a pair of free throws on the other end and Cummings hit a quick trey for the Sycamores cut the Wichita State lead to two at 64-62 with 24 seconds remaining.
On the ensuing in-bound the Sycamores nearly had the Shockers trapped in the corner but Odum was called for a foul and Wichita State hit both free throws. The Sycamores could get no closer as they fell to the Shockers 66-62 for their first loss at home in Missouri Valley Conference play this season.
Arop led three Sycamores to reach double figures with 17 and nine rebounds while Odum recorded 15 points, six rebounds and five assists and Mahurin added 13 points. Cleanthony Early led all scorers with 19 points for the Shockers.
The Sycamores will return to action Saturday when they host Iona at 11 a.m. as part of the Ramada Worldwide Bracketbusters.