Rutledge's game-high 25 points power No. 23 Southern Ind. past No. 12 UIndy
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- No. 23 Southern Indiana ended a two-game losing skid by upsetting 12th-ranked Indianapolis 87-62 on Thursday.
USI improved to 17-5 overall and 10-4 in the GLVC, while UIndy fell to 17-5, 9-5 GLVC.
The Screaming Eagles jumped to a fast start in the first half, overcoming a four-point deficit with a 16-2 run to take a 10-point lead 21-11. USI extended its lead to as many as 14 points by halftime.
Junior forward Orlando Rutledge led the Eagles with 13 points in the opening half, while senior center Keith DeWitt and junior guard Ben Jones dropped in nine points apiece.
USI also did a solid job on the defensive end in the opening 20 minutes, holding UIndy to 25 percent from the field (7 of 28) and blocking seven shots.
The Eagles continued to roll in the second half, increasing their lead to as many as 24 points with 13:46 left. UIndy started to chip away at the USI advantage, cutting the lead to 70-58 with 5:51 remaining in the game.
The momentum swung back to the Eagles when junior guard Lawrence Thomas posted steals on back-to-back possessions and enabled USI to push its lead up to 16 points with 4:24 on the clock. It was all Eagles in the last four minutes as they extended their lead to a 25-point final. They held the Greyhounds to just four points after the final media timeout. The Eagles limited the Greyhounds to just 38.8 percent (19-for-49) in the game.
USI shot a blistering 60 percent in the game (30 of 50), nearly 20 points better than its previous two losses at home. The Eagles were also 50 percent from beyond the arc (8 of 16) and 73.1 percent from the free throw line (19 of 26).
Individually, Rutledge finished with a game-high 25 points and reached 20-plus points for the fifth time this season. DeWitt and Jones followed with 14 points each, while Thomas and junior forward Taylor Wischmeier rounded out the double-digit scoring with 10 points apiece.
The 14 points off the bench for Jones marked a career high, who was 4 of 5 from the field and 4-for-4 from long range. Senior guard Kenyon Smith tied a career-best with seven assists.