MOREHEAD Trailing throughout the contest, Morehead State's men's basketball team put together a 12-0 run in the final five-plus minutes and held off a pesky Eastern Illinois team in the final minute for a 69-66 Ohio Valley Conference victory at Johnson Arena Saturday.
The Eagles won their third straight game and improved to 9-8 overall and 3-1 in the league. EIU, which dropped consecutive road games by three points this week, fell to 7-9 and 0-4 in the conference.
Trailing 58-55 with 6:25 remaining, freshman forward Tyzhaun Claude converted a lay-in to bring his team to within one. Just more than a minute later, sophomore guard Malik Riddle gave the home team its first lead, and the advantage for good, with a steal and slam dunk. The Eagles went on to lead 67-58 before a furious rally brought the Panthers back to within 67-66 with just 14 seconds left.
Junior guard Juice Thomas, despite playing a majority of the second half with four fouls, led the Eagles with 18 points, six assists and five rebounds. Senior guard Djimon Henson registered 10 points. Josiah Wallace led EIU with 17 points but was limited to only four in the final 20 minutes.
MSU finished a five-game homestand with this contest and now heads to Nashville to face Tennessee State Thursday and Belmont Saturday.