IPFW got a balanced effort, coupled with a huge second half offensively, as it topped SIU-Edwardsville 95-76 in men's basketball action Saturday at the Gates Sports Center.
Luis Jacobo scored a game-high 20 points for IPFW (9-4), and Pierre Bland picked up his first double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Isaiah McCray and Michael Kibiloski each scored 11 in the win, while Steve Forbes chipped in 10. Three others - Joe Reed (8), Joe Edwards (7), and Mo Evans (7) - were also within striking distance of double-figures in the win.
Bland's 11 boards paced the Mastodons, as they out-rebounded the Cougars 37-to-24. The Mastodons hauled in nine on the offensive glass.
Evans dished out a career-high-tying four assists, while Bland led the squad with three steals.
The Mastodon offense struggled out of the gate in the game, as the team scored just six points in the first five minutes of action, as the team found itself trailing by as many as four in the first half, and wouldn't take its first lead until the game was seven and a half minutes old.
Trailing 18-17, IPFW ran off seven straight points on lay-ins by Forbes and Bland, a jumper by Evans, and a free throw from Forbes, as the 'Dons pushed ahead to a six-point lead, and never trailed again in the game.
SIUE fought back, closing the gap to two at 29-27, but an 10-2 IPFW run pushed the hosts ahead by double digits, sending the Mastodons into the locker room with a 39-31 advantage.
A 15-6 run to start the second half put IPFW ahead by 17 just over three minutes into the second half, and the margin never reached single digits the rest of the way.
A Forbes dunk halfway through the second half put IPFW ahead by 20, and the lead reached its high water mark at 86-63 after a McCray made three-point basket, as head coach Tony Jasick emptied his bench over the final minute and a half, as the team cruised to the 20-point win.
Maurice Wiltz and Keton Jackson each scored 14 for the Cougars, who put four players in double-figures in the game.
IPFW shot 57.4 percent from the field in the game (31-of-54), while making 12-of-25 (48 percent) rom long range, and 21-of-31 (67.7 percent) from the charity stripe. SIUE went 27-of-61 (44.3 percent) from the field, 9-of-23 (39.1%) from beyond the arc, and 12-of-14 (85.7 percent) from the free throw line.
The Mastodons will host Eastern Illinois Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Gates Sports Center.