PEORIA (WSIL)-- Friday night SIU men's basketball team took their game to Bradley in hopes of picking up their first conference win on the road.
I think we heard this story before, good week of practice with good results at home, but the Salukis look like a completely different team on the road.
Again the Salukis just couldn't finish the full 40 minutes of basketball. They led by 3 at the break. Defensively SIU held Bradley to its second lowest scoring half in a home game this season.
In the second half Bradley pulled away. The Braves went on a 9-0 run, and then on offense, the Salukis went cold.
Friday they went 16 for 57 from the field - that's just 28% ..with numbers like that its almost a guarantee you wont win the game.
SIU men's basketball head coach Bryan Mullins commented on the team's performance.
"We play with energy and intensity in terms of knowing the personnel and knowing some of their sets," said Mullins. "We did a good job taking away some actions we went over, in the second half it just wasn't there and with the inexperience we have on our team, we got to learn to play two halves especially on the road, especially against a team as good as Bradley is, you can't have any mistakes or mental mistakes."
Friday night we saw SIU Center Sekou Dembele go down. He appeared to be in a lot of pain and did not return to the game. Today we learned the redshirt freshman fractured the tibia in his left leg and will be out for the remainder of the season. The Salukis spoke about Dembele's impact to the team.
"It hurt us, don't know if that had a factor on our play in the second half, we were thinking about him too much," said Marcus Domask. "It hurts us to see a teammate go down. We were going to try to win that for him and we didn't obviously."
"The guys love Sekou and he's a great teammate and they were a little shook up about it when it first happened but I'm not going to say that's the reason why we played poorly in the second half," said Mullins.