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No. 2 Vincennes University gives Lincoln Trail first men’s basketball loss

VINCENNES, Ind. - The No. 2 Vincennes University men’s basketball team overcame a two-point halftime deficit to hand Lincoln Trail its first loss of the season, 75-61, in a Region 24 game Wednesday at the P.E. Complex.

After trailing at halftime for just the second time all season, 30-28, the Trailblazers (12-1, 5-0 District 24) used a 13-2 run starting with about 15 minutes remaining to put away the Statesmen (10-1, 3-1 Region 24). Lincoln Trail received votes in the latest NJCAA Division I rankings.

Back-to-back dunks by sophomores Craig Porter (Terre Haute, Ind.) and Kevin Osawe (Brampton, Ontario, Canada.) sparked the spree, which saw the Trailblazers turn a 36-33 deficit into a 46-38 advantage. The Trailblazers continued to extend the lead from then on, and would eventually lead by as many as 14 points on four different occasions.

VU Statistical Leaders

Osawe led all VU players with 19 points, including 11 in the opening half. Porter added 12 points, while sophomore Chinedu Okanu (Gary, Ind.) finished with 10.

Porter grabbed nine rebounds for the Trailblazers, who finished with a 42-38 advantage on the boards. Osawe added eight rebounds, Okanu seven and freshman Christian Wells (Muncie, Ind.), six.

Porter totaled five assists, five blocks and seven steals to lead the Trailblazers in all three categories. Sophomore Colton Sandage (Bloomington, Ill.) contributed two steals, while sophomore Chuka Mekkam (Portland, Ore.) added four assists and Okanu blocked a shot.

VU Coach Todd Franklin says. . .

“Looking at where we are, in terms of wins, losses, standings, etc., we’re in really good shape. Our positioning is good, It’s our play that has to improve.”

“Craig (Porter) got active in the second half. When we’re playing harder, a little bit more focused and a little bit more intense, he starts to play better. He’s an activity kind of guy. As our activity and intensity get up, and all those things get going, he plays a lot better. He’s playing his type of game.”

Notes

  • The 61-point output was by far a season-low for the Statesmen, who entered the game with a 103.3 scoring average.
  • The Trailblazers now lead the all-time series with the Statesmen, 70-8. The Trailblazers hold a 36-1 edge over Lincoln Trail in games played at the P.E. Complex. Lincoln Trail has not defeated the Trailblazers since claiming a 111-108 win at the P.E. Complex in 1990.
  • The Trailblazers forced the Statesmen into 23 turnovers, while committing 14.
  • The game featured four ties and five lead changes. Lincoln Trail’s biggest lead came after it scored the game’s first eight points.
  • The win was the seventh straight for the Trailblazers, whose only loss was a 63-60 setback at Highland on Nov. 13.
  • Lincoln Trail sophomore Dante Combs (Michigan City, Ind.) led all players with 22 points. Combs was the only Lincoln Trail player to reach double digits.

Next up

The Trailblazers will close out the 2019 portion of the schedule with a game against Bosco Institute on Dec. 17 at the P.E Complex at 7 p.m. ET. After that the team is off until it hosts Elizabethtown Tech on Jan. 4.

Follow Trailblazer athletics on Twitter @VUBlazerSports and Facebook

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Vincennes University Newsroom
Vincennes University Trailblazer Athletics

MARCIA MARTINEZ, Sports Information Director & University Life Reporter

   812-888-4164 office, 314-599-1519 cell, VUNews@vinu.edu, mmartinez@vinu.edu

VINCENNES UNIVERSITY, Department of University Relations, www.vinu.edu/newsroom

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