Southern Illinois Ends Undefeated Run for Saint Mary's

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) -- Bryan Mullins scored 24 points and Southern Illinois spoiled Saint Mary's first game as a ranked team in 18 years with a 71-56 victory over the 24th-ranked Gaels on Tuesday night.

The point total was a season low for Saint Mary's (7-1), which was last ranked in March 1989.

Southern Illinois (4-3) ended a three-game losing streak that had knocked the Salukis from the Top 25.

Saint Mary's, which trailed 36-24 at halftime, rallied within six points with 4 minutes remaining, but Mullins scored nine points down the stretch and the Salukis held on.

Freshman guard Patrick Mills, Saint Mary's leading scorer with a 16.1 average, was held to 11 points.

Freshman Brandon Wood was 3-for-4 from 3-point range to lead the Salukis' 6-for-13 effort from behind the arc.

Josh Bone and Matt Shaw both had 10 points for Southern Illinois.

SIU forced 19 turnovers against the Gaels, who were ranked 13th nationally averaging 83.6 points per game and had consistently approached 100 points all season.

Randal Falker, Southern Illinois' leading scorer who was held scoreless in the Salukis' loss at Charlotte on Saturday, scored all eight of his points in the first half Tuesday night and had 12 rebounds.

The Gaels' big win this season was a 99-87 victory over No. 16 Oregon on Nov. 20. They also defeated Seton Hall 85-70 in a matchup of unbeaten teams on Dec. 1.


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