Redbirds Fall At UNI; Still Clinch No. 6 Seed
Johnny Hill

Johnny Hill

March 2, 2013

Final Stats | 2013 Valley Tournament Bracket

Postgame Interview with Dan Muller Postgame Interview with Tyler Brown Play-by-Play Highlights

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - Even though Illinois State lost its regular-season finale, 80-72, Saturday night at Northern Iowa, the Redbirds still clinched the No. 6 seed in next week's Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, thanks to Southern Illinois' victory at Drake.

ISU (17-14, 8-10 MVC) has avoided the play-in game, and will face No. 3 Northern Iowa (18-13, 11-7 MVC) again in the tournament quarterfinals, Friday, March 8, at 8:35 p.m.

Tyler Brown became the 41st member of Illinois State's 1,000-point club, as the senior guard finished with a game-high 28 points against the Panthers. He is also just the third player in program history to reach 1,000 points in his first two seasons as a Redbird, after transferring to ISU from Marshalltown Community College. The only other two players to accomplish that feat were Doug Collins and Tarise Bryson.

Johnny Hill also reached double-figures, with 14 points, while Brown grabbed a team-high nine rebounds. Jackie Carmichael was plagued by foul trouble and limited to five points and six rebounds.

Northern Iowa featured four players in double-figures, including Anthony James, who netted a team-best 19 points. Seth Tuttle and Jake Koch each contributed double-doubles in the winning effort. The Redbirds shot 50 percent from the field, but were outrebounded, 42-26. The Panthers also attempted 15 more free throws than ISU.

The Redbirds jumped out to a 12-3 lead at the 17:25 mark, with five early points from Brown. ISU led by as many as 11 early in the first half. However, Northern Iowa responded with a 10-2 run to pull within 21-18.

The Panthers then tied the game, 23-23, with a dunk by Koch, and UNI took its first lead on a James three-pointer that pushed Northern Iowa ahead, 28-26, with 3:13 remaining. The Panthers led by as many as eight with 50 seconds remaining in the opening period, before a free throw by Carmichael trimmed UNI's halftime advantage to 39-32.

Carmichael started the second half by making a layup while being fouled to pull the Redbirds within 39-34. Later in the period, ISU outscored UNI, 7-0 over a five-minute span to make the score 49-44. Illinois State edged within one point of UNI, 66-65, on a pair of free throws by Brown at the 4:17 mark, but ISU could not get closer.

Brown hit a jumper to make the score, 71-67, with 2:39 remaining, but the Panthers held ISU to just two more field goals, as UNI secured the 80-72 victory. The Panthers swept the regular-season series from the Redbirds, and Illinois State has still never won at the McLeod Center.

Both teams will meet again in the Valley Tournament quarterfinals Friday at 8:35 p.m. in St. Louis. Tickets are available by calling the Redbird Arena Ticket office at (309) 438-8000. The game will also be televised on Valley-TV. Your online source for Illinois State Athletics, tickets, Weisbecker Scholarship Fund gifts, multimedia, Redbird merchandise, photos and more.