Nashville, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Corey Walden scored 24 points, dished out
four assists and recorded six steals as the third-seeded Eastern Kentucky
Colonels held on down the stretch to defeat the second-seeded Murray State
Racers, 86-83, in the semifinal round of the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament
at Municipal Auditorium.
Glenn Cosey netted 17 points, Orlando Williams chipped in 13, and both Eric
Stutz and Marcus Lewis contributed 10 points for Eastern Kentucky (23-9),
which will face Belmont in the OVC title game on Saturday.
Cameron Payne scored 24 points and hit a perfect 10-of-10 from the free-throw
line to lead Murray State (18-11), but missed a game-tying 3-pointer at the
buzzer after the Racers were forced to make a furious second-half comeback.
Jeffery Moss tallied 18 points, Jarvis Williams chipped in 13 points with nine
rebounds, and Dexter Fields and T.J. Sapp each scored 11 in the loss.
Eastern Kentucky hit an impressive 65.5 percent of its shot attempts in the
first half, including 3-of-11 from 3-point range, and took a 46-37 lead into
the intermission. Murray State connected on 48 percent of its field goal tries
in the frame, and made 5-of-12 from 3-point distance.
The Colonels let the lead slip in the second half, even though they shot 52
percent from the floor and 11-of-15 from the free-throw line. The Racers hit
44 percent of their tries, including 4-of-16 from deep, and added 20-of-24
from the charity stripe. Murray State cut the lead to three in the final
minutes, but couldn't make the full comeback or connect on two 3-point tries
with under 10 seconds to play.
Eastern Kentucky kept its advantage by forcing 19 Murray State turnovers in
the contest, and holding the Racers to a 32.1 percent 3-point shooting mark.
Murray State outscored Eastern Kentucky from the free-throw line, 28-16, and
outrebounded the Colonels, 34-20.
The Sports Network