For Immediate Release
Men's Basketball -- Dec. 15, 2011
Rose-Hulman Pulls Away From Eureka, 92-70
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – The Eureka College men’s basketball team trailed by one possession at halftime of Thursday’s non-conference game at Rose-Hulman, but the Fightin’ Engineers slowly pulled away from the Red Devils in the second half to earn a 92-70 victory at Hulbert Arena in Terre Haute, Ind. Eureka’s defeat snaps a four-game winning streak.
The hosts quickly turned their two-point lead into a 10-point lead in the first four minutes of the second half when James Pillischafske drilled a 3-pointer for a 48-38 lead with 15:21 to play. Eureka (5-4) bounced right back, getting 3-point baskets from juniors Dustin Fritsch (Sterling, Ill./Sterling H.S./Sauk Valley) and Jordan Kindred (Chrisman, Ill./Chrisman H.S.) on its next two possessions to trail 48-44. The Fightin’ Engineers prevented the Red Devils from getting within a single possession for the remainder of the game, slowly building a double-digit advantage. Jake Dodd’s transition triple with 9:50 remaining gave Rose-Hulman a 63-53 lead, an advantage that would stay above double-figures for the remainder of the night.
The first half featured a pair of ties and five lead changes, as Eureka overcame a sluggish start for the second consecutive night. After falling behind 19-9 in the first seven minutes, the Red Devils ripped off a 13-2 run and took their first lead since the first minute of the contest, 22-21, on a layup from junior guard Rian Nailor (Rock Falls, Ill./Rock Falls H.S./Sauk Valley) with 10:34 remaining before halftime.
Neither team would lead by more than five points for the remainder of the first half, and the hosts took a two-point lead (36-34) into halftime after Julian Strickland knocked down four free throws in the final minute.
Rose-Hulman, which is receiving votes to land just outside the weekly D3Hoops.com Top 25 poll, enjoyed a significant advantage on Wednesday in free throws attempted. The Fightin’ Engineers drew 25 Eureka fouls and finished 30-for-35 from the charity stripe. Eureka made all nine of its free throws, but was fouled only 11 times for the game and did not reach the bonus in either half.
Fritsch scored a game-high 23 points and collected 12 boards for his second double-double in as many nights. Nailor poured in 18 points and knocked down four 3-pointers, while Kindred hit double-figures with 10 points and added a game-high five assists. Pillischafske’s 20 points paced five Fightin’ Engineers in double-figures, as Rose-Hulman improved to 8-1 for its best start since the 1992-93 season.
The Red Devils will return to action on Tuesday, Dec. 27 at Western Illinois, Eureka’s second game against NCAA Division I opposition this season. The Red Devils and Leathernecks will tip-off at 7:30 p.m. at Western Hall.
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