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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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Panthers blow out Redhawks in conference win

Sia DeyKoontz
Junior guard/forward Kyndall Davis hangs onto the rim in Groniger Arena. The Panthers beat the Southeast Missouri State Redhawks 72-57 Thursday evening in Groniger Arena.

With an 18-point margin and 13 more rebounds than Southeast Missouri State University (SEMO), Eastern beat SEMO 75-57 Thursday evening in Groniger Arena.

Junior guard/forward Kyndall Davis led the team with 26 points which is his new season-high.

“I’m excited we got the win,” Davis said. “Me and my team, we hit it on all cylinders today. We locked in and executed our coaches’ game plan, and we came out successful.”

The Panthers started the first half with a 24-10 run over the Redhawks.

“Basketball is a game of runs,” Davis said. “We just wanted to keep our foot on the gas so [SEMO] couldn’t come back.”

Eastern never lost momentum throughout the game. Junior guard Dan Luers scored and early jumper to start the Panthers’ first 7-0 run in the first half.

Junior forward Rodolfo Rufino Bolis stole the ball from Redhawk senior forward Josh Earley which led to a three-pointer from Panther junior guard Corey Sawyer Jr.

Sawyer Jr. ended the game with 15 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals.

“[The] coaches have been trying to build my confidence, and my teammates tell me to play free and do what they know I can do,” Sawyer Jr. said.

After a missed layup from Redhawk sophomore guard Evan Eursher, Davis secured the defensive rebound to give the Panthers the possession.

Senior guard Tiger Booker attempts a layup in the second half of the basketball game against Southeast Missouri State University. The Panthers beat the Redhawks 75-57 Thursday evening in Groniger Arena. (Sia DeyKoontz)

Senior guard Tiger Booker set up the offensive and passed the ball to Davis for a dunk to put the Panthers up 8-4.

Booker ended the game with 11 points, five assists and four rebounds.

“We knew how important this [game] was,” Booker said. “The way we came out the first half, we knew we had to come out that way in the second half.”

The Panthers kept a steady margin between themselves and the Redhawks throughout the second half.

Eastern won the rebounding battle between SEMO as the Panthers recorded 43 rebounds compared to the Redhawks’ 30 rebounds.

Although the Panthers recorded more rebounds than the Redhawks, Sawyer Jr. still saw room for improvement to prepare for the next game on Saturday.

“They had eight offensive rebounds,” Sawyer Jr. said. “We can do better on that. Our coaches emphasize boxing out, and so we can do better on boxing out and try to increase the rebounding battle and give the opposite team less possessions and give us more possessions.”

With this win, Eastern moves to 12-14 overall with a 6-7 Ohio Valley Conference record.

The Panthers remain in seventh place in standings in the OVC.

Eastern will return back to the court to host Lindenwood Saturday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. at Groniger Arena.

Seniors on the team for the Panthers will be recognized before the game.


Zaria Flippin can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].

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Zaria Flippin
Zaria Flippin, Sports Editor
Zaria Flippin is a junior sports media relations major. This is her first year at The News.

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