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

EIU obtains first home conference win

Abraham Ortiz
Senior guard Jordan “Tiger” Booker during the men’s basketball game against Tennessee Tech Thursday night at Groniger Arena. The Panthers beat the Golden Eagles 68-59.

Eastern men’s basketball clinched the victory against Tennessee Tech University in a fast paced game as the Panthers beat the Golden Eagles 68-59 Thursday evening in Groniger Arena.

Starting with the tip off in favor of Eastern, communication was a key point as the Panthers gained an advantage on the Golden Eagles. 

The Panthers started out hot in the first half and kept that momentum going into the second.

Leading in points the first half was junior guard NaKyel Shelton with 12 points, two of which being three pointers. 

By the end of the game, Shelton led with five assists along with one rebound and two steals.

Kyndall Davis, junior guard/forward, followed in the first half with nine points as well as junior guard Dan Luers, who made the third three pointer of the first half.

“Came out the gate, I wanted to be aggressive,” Shelton said. “Coach gave me some plays, and my shots just followed.”

Eastern ended the first half ahead of Tennessee Tech 31-27 with lots of momentum going into that second half.

Senior guard Tiger Booker dominated the second half, racking up 24 points, scoring 26 in total for the night.

Booker ended the game with three rebounds, three steals and two assists as well.

With redshirt sophomore Kooper Jacobi still out with a foot injury, junior forward Rodolfo Rufino Bolis stepped up in his place.

Bolis had a standout performance with 11 rebounds, four points and two assists.

Bolis’ energy captivated the entire team working to motivate. 

“I would say this is my best performance since my sophomore year,” Bolis said.

Head coach Marty Simmons also recognized Bolis having a vital part of the game.

“If you were handing out player of the game awards, I would say he’s got it,” Simmons said about Bolis. “He brought in a lot of energy that ran throughout the whole team.”

The men played a strong defense, possessing thirty-three rebounds, twenty-two of them being on defense.

Sophomore forward Sincere Malone followed Bolis’ eleven rebounds with four as well as Davis and Booker both recording three. 

The Panthers are now 4-3 in conference play and 10-10 overall as they lead into their next conference match up on Saturday against the Tennessee State Tigers.

Going into Saturday’s game, Simmons wants the Panthers to work on putting up more shots along with keeping the momentum with rebounds.

Eastern will return to Groniger Arena against Tennessee State with tip off being at 3:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon.


Chloe Proffitt can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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Chloe Proffitt
Chloe Proffitt, Sports Reporter
Chloe Proffitt is a freshman nutrition and dietetics major and can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].

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