Don’t let the final score fool you: this game wasn’t in doubt in the second half.
Four Colonels score in double figures, as Eastern Kentucky handles their rivals 59-52. The win moves EKU to 4-0 in the OVC, their best conference start in 34 years.
Morehead State jumped out to an early lead, leading by six with 5:20 to go in the first half. From there, the Colonels take over, closing the half on a 18-1 run, taking an 11-point lead into the locker room. The run would continue after the half, as Morehead State goes nine minutes combined without a field goal. By the time Devon Atkinson hits a three with 16:27 left in the game, the Eagles were down by 13.
Eastern Kentucky would continue to extend the lead, up by 20 with 4:50 to play. Morehead State would score 17 points in the final four minutes, but would only pull within seven on a layup with two seconds remaining.
The Colonels shoot just 40% from the floor, their worst shooting night in OVC play, and since losing at North Carolina A&T almost a month ago. Mike DiNunno leads the way with 13 points. Tarius Johnson added 11, while Eric Stutz and Orlando Williams finished with 10 points each. Glenn Cosey missed another game as he continues to deal with a broken finger.
Morehead State did force 18 EKU turnovers, but once again lose the turnover battle, with 22 of their own. Drew Kelly has his fifth straight double-digit scoring night, finishing with a double-double thanks to a game-high 10 rebounds. The Eagles shot just 9-16 (56.3%) from the free throw line, and only sent the Colonels to the line 20 times. EKU hit 13. (65%)
Eastern Kentucky not only avoided a letdown, they has another massive, long run that propelled them to an easy win. They didn’t execute as well on offense as we’ve seen in the past, but did well enough to keep Morehead State at bay.
Today was really more of the same for Morehead State. Turnovers and fouls have to be at the top of the concern list, and the offensive execution overall is still lacking. Kelly has been solid in OVC play, and could provide some stability to a lineup that hasn’t really had any this year.
The big stretch for Eastern Kentucky continues this week, as they travel to Belmont (13-4, 4-0) and Jacksonville State (12-5, 4-2). Morehead State continues their road swing traveling to Southeast Missouri (10-9, 2-3) and UT Martin. (4-14, 1-5)