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IPFW routs in-state rival for 16th win

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For more on college basketball, follow Tom Davis via Twitter at www.twitter.com/Tom101010.

Mastodons get balanced effort in runaway victory

Saturday, January 25, 2014 - 10:33 pm

IPFW and IUPUI have proven to be close rivals over the past few seasons. In the four prior meetings spanning two years entering Saturday's Summit League men's basketball contest, the two squads have split the games evenly.

Perhaps those days have ended.

IPFW raced out to a big first half lead at the Gates Sports Center and never looked back in a 90-75 win.

Five Mastodons reached double-figure scoring, led by 19 points from Luis Jacobo, while Pierre Bland finished with 16 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists.

Redshirt junior post Steve Forbes hit 7-of-8 shots from the field, scoring 16 points in the win, as senior forward Michael Kibiloski added 14 and freshman guard Mo Evans 10.

Forbes pulled down seven rebounds with junior guard Joe Edwards added six to go with his eight points. Edwards and Evans each dished out three assists, as Bland had a game-high three steals.

The victory gives IPFW (16-6, 4-1 SL) its best 22-game start in program history and the Mastodons are tied for first in the conference along with North Dakota State, who IPFW beat recently.

Saturday's game was close through the opening six minutes before the Mastodons ran off nine straight points over a two-minute span. The Mastodons led by seven at that point and would not trail again.

The Mastodons kept their foot on the gas pedal for the remainder of the first half, leading by as many as 17 with 2:30 to play before the visitors scored four of the last six points of the period, cutting the IPFW advantage to 15 at 44-29 at the break.

The margin never reached single digits in the second half, as the Mastodons pushed to a lead as big as 22 in the second half, before holding on for a 15-point victory.

IPFW out-rebounded IUPUI 37-to-28, while the Mastodons dished out 18 assists against 14 turnovers.

The Mastodons hit 56.5 percent (35-of-62) of their shots in the game, and half of their 26 three-point attempts.

IUPUI went 26-of-61 from the field (42.6 percent), and 5-of-18 (27.8 percent) from long range.

The Jaguars were led by 20 points from Khufu Najee, as Mitch Patton and Ja'Rob McCallum each scored 18.

The Mastodons will host Omaha on Thursday at 7 p.m.