Aces set to return home to face Missouri State
Shamar Givance scored 17 points while Evan Kuhlman finished with 16 as the University of Evansville men’s basketball team fell to Drake by a 74-63 final on Monday night at the Knapp Center.
Givance hit six shots and finished with three assists while Kuhlman was 6-of-9 from the field while hitting four triples. Jawaun Newton scored 14 while Samari Curtis had 13. Drake was led by a 36-point outing from Joseph Yesufu.
Shamar Givance got the Aces on the board first, knocking down a triple on the first possession. UE would take a 5-2 edge before the Bulldogs took their first advantage at 7-5 when Garrett Sturtz hit a layup at the 16:34 mark. Evan Kuhlman, who had 13 points in the first half, put his team back in front on a triple two minutes later before Drake reeled off five in a row to hold a 14-10 lead with 13:05 remaining.
With seven minutes left in the opening frame, Drake held its largest lead at 24-19. That is when Evansville fought back thanks to its effectiveness from outside, coupled with solid defense. UE outscored Drake by a 16-7 tally to go to the break with a 35-31 lead. Consecutive triples by Samari Curtis capped off an 8-0 run at the Aces would hold the lead for the final 4:06 of the half.
Kuhlman hit three triples in the half with UE hitting seven as a team. Joseph Yesufu paced the Bulldogs with 18 first-half points following his 32-point effort on Sunday.
Out of the break, the Bulldogs chipped away at the UE lead, tying it up at 38-38 before going ahead by a 41-39 tally over the first three minutes. As the second half reached the midway point, the Bulldogs extended the lead to nine points at 54-45. They continued to apply the pressure as the Aces hit a shooting drought that saw them convert one out of 11 attempts while Drake went up by double figures. A 6-0 run by the Bulldogs was halted by a pair of Shamar Givance free throws that got UE back within 11 at 59-48 inside of the 5-minute mark.
The momentum for UE was short-lived with Drake bouncing back to lead by as many as 15 – 65-50 – inside of the final three minutes. Evansville was able to force two late turnovers and get back within 10 in the last minute but the deficit was too large to overcome with the Bulldogs finishing the night with a 74-63 win.
Later this week, the Aces wrap up the regular season at the Ford Center with games against Missouri State. UE welcomes the Bears on Friday and Saturday with each game beginning at 6 p.m.