Eagles start cold, fall to #4 Michigan State


EAST LANSING, Mich. – University of Southern Indiana Men’s Basketball could not get the offense into gear in the first half and lost to fourth-ranked Michigan State University, 74-51, Thursday evening at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Michigan. The Screaming Eagles start the year 0-2, while Michigan State begins 2023-24, 1-1.
The first half saw the Eagles’ offense stuck in neutral, while USI defensive effort held the Spartans to under 40 percent from the field for the first 12 minutes of the contest. Michigan State also took good advantage of 11 trips to the line for nine of their 19 points.
The Spartans took command and used an 18-0 run to lead, 29-6 with 5:25 left in the opening half. Eagles had a small run that broke an 11-minute scoreless drought before the Spartans closed out the half with a 37-14 lead.
In the second half, USI was able to get the offense running, outscoring Michigan State, 14-6, during the opening minutes of the final stanza by shooting 60 percent from the field (6-10). Junior forward Jack Mielke (Downer’s Grove, Illinois) led the way with a pair of three pointers and six of the 14 points.
Michigan State re-established control with a 10-3 run of its own to push the score back to 22, 53-31, with over 12 minutes to play. USI closed the gap to 19 points, 62-43, but that would be as close as the Eagles would come the rest of the way despite battling the Spartans
The second half saw USI shoot drastically better, shooting 48.1 percent from the field (13-27), compared to 14.8 percent in the opening stanza (4-27).
For the game, junior guard Jordan Tillmon (Pine Bluff, Arkansas) led the Eagles with 10 points and tied for second on the team with five rebounds. Mielke followed in the scoring column with nine points, while senior forward Nolan Causwell (Duluth, Georgia) led the squad with seven rebounds.  
Next Up For USI:
USI will host Chicago State University Sunday at 3:30 p.m. for the 2023-24 home opener at Screaming Eagles Arena. The game will start a two-game homestand for the Eagles.
The Eagles, who are slated to host 14 home games this year at Screaming Eagles Arena, has single-game tickets on sale now on USIScreamingEagles.com.
Chicago State fell to 0-2 after losing its home opener to Mercer University, 66-61, tonight in Chicago. The Cougars who lost their season-opener to Bowling Green State University, 70-41, was led by junior guard Jahsean Corbett, who had 10 points.
USI lost the first-ever meeting with Chicago State last year on the road, 78-61.