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Indiana State downs Drake, 60-56

Courtesy Drake Athletics –

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – The Drake University men’s basketball team had a game-tying shot with five seconds remaining in the game miss its mark in a 60-56 loss at Indiana State Sunday afternoon at the Hulman Center.

“Our effort was where it needed to be tonight and our guys battled for 40 minutes,” said Drake head coach Ray Giacoletti. “We had three offensive rebounds in the last three minutes and had done a pretty good job on transition defense all night.”

Drake (12-12, 3-9 MVC) led just briefly in the first half, but never trailed by more than 10 points before pulling within three points in the final minute of the contest on a Karl Madison (Springfield, Ill.) layup. The defense earned a stop against Indiana State’s Jake Odum on the ensuing possession and called a timeout with 16 seconds left to set up a potential game-tying shot with the score 59-56.

Unfortunately, that attempt off the hot hand of Aaron Hawley (Rogers, Ark.) was just off its mark against defensive pressure and the rebound fell into the Sycamores’ hands. Hawley finished with 11 points and five rebounds. Indiana State (18-6, 9-3 MVC), which came into the game in second place in the MVC standings, was led by 19 points from Khristian Smith off the bench.

Trevor Berkeley (Tucker, Ga.) led Drake with 12 points, nine of them coming in the first half as the junior spent large spells of the second half on the bench with four fouls to finish a point shy of his career high.

“He hit some shots that were huge shots for us,” Giacoletti said of Berkeley. “He’s got to be able to shoot it or they’re not going to guard him. Now he has to figure out slashing and bouncing past his defender.”

Nine of his points came on three-pointers as the Bulldogs shot 47.1 percent from the three-point arc with eight makes to Indiana State’s 11.1 percent. That difference helped even a contest that saw ISU outrebound Drake by seven and win the turnover differential by three.

The Bulldogs set up the final-minute drama two minutes earlier when back-to-back three-pointers from Hawley and Chris Caird (Daventry, England) with 2:30 left capped a 6-0 run. That run was the final push in a half that saw Drake rally from an earlier 10-point deficit with 13 minutes to play to pull within three points, 45-42, on a Jordan Daniels (Fontana, Calif.) layup just three minutes later.

While ISU opened the second half strong, Drake closed the first half on a 7-0 run as the defense got six straight stops to allow the Bulldogs to trim a 9-point deficit down to a 28-26 margin heading into the locker room. That spurt was characteristic of the half as the teams swapped runs with neither squad being able to keep the other on the ropes.

Drake faced an early 9-3 deficit before assembling a 10-0 run capped by a Caird three-pointer to put the Bulldogs up 13-9 seven minutes into the game. Berkeley, who finished with nine first-half points, added a pair of three-pointers during that span as nine of the team’s first 13 points came from the three-point arc.

However, ISU answered with a 9-0 run of their own to re-take the lead and held the Bulldogs to just one field goal during the following 10-minute span to take a 28-19 lead with 3:50 left in the half before the Drake defense clamped down to give Drake a shot of momentum heading into the break.

The Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday evening when they travel to Missouri State to face the Bears at 7 p.m. on ESPN3.

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