The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

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Jacobi records double double in Panther win

Guard+Jaylin+Gibson+%2824%29+warms+up+before+their+IUPUI+game+Thursday+night.+The+Panthers+won+75-58+against+the+Jaguars.
Sia Deykoontz
Guard Jaylin Gibson (24) warms up before their IUPUI game Thursday night. The Panthers won 75-58 against the Jaguars.

Eastern’s men’s basketball improved their record to 5-5 on the season and remain undefeated on their home court in a 75-58 victory against the IUPUI Jaguars on Thursday night at Groniger Arena.

The contest began with a 7-0 lead in favor of the Jaguars.

After a pair of layups from junior forward Rodolfo Rufino Bolis and redshirt sophomore forward Kooper Jacobi, the Panthers would tie the game with a three from junior guard Corey Sawyer Jr.

Another Bolis layup would give the Panthers their first lead of the game and one they would not let go of.

Eastern showed strong defensive presence during the first half, limiting the Jaguars’ bench to just 10 points.

At one point their lead would grow to as much as a 13-point advantage for the Panthers.

Despite their defensive efforts, the Jaguars would rally and end the half on an 11-4 run, making the score 34-28 going into the second half.

During the first half, both Jacobi and Sawyer Jr. would score seven points each on a combined 6-11 shooting rate.

“Coach and my teammates believe in me,” Sawyer Jr. said. “They boost my confidence in practice and tell me to play free and help the team out in any way I can.”

Eastern responded by scoring six straight to open up the second half.

Panthers’ Head Coach Marty Simmons touched on how the team adjusted to the run the Jaguars went on.

“We talked about how we finished the half,” Simmons said. “We felt like we had to have energy to start the second half. I thought we regrouped and came out with that energy.”

The energy proved to be a difference maker for the Panther as their field goal percentage jumped to 64 percent.

“It’s important to play with pace especially against a matchup zone,” Simmons said. “Guys have a tendency to stand around. When we cut hard and had good ball movement, we were much more effective.”

Jacobi recorded a double-double with 15 points and 15 rebounds.

Sawyer Jr. matched Jacobi’s 15 points with that of his own.

The Panthers also dominated in the glass, winning the rebound war 38-24 against the Jaguars.

“Everybody on the team can score and everybody can contribute,” Sawyer Jr. said. “It was me and Kooper’s night tonight; the next game it could be somebody else. The depth of our team is our strong suit.”

Eastern play their next game on Sunday against Central Arkansas at 2 p.m. at Groniger Arena.

Maurice Phipps can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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Maurice Phipps, Sports Reporter
Maurice Phipps can be reached at [email protected] or 581-2812.

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