EVANSVILLE, Ind. — After scoring the first basket of the second half to break a halftime tie, Eastern Kentucky saw Evansville use 17-6 run to take control in a 86-72 loss in the second round of the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament.
The Colonels conclude the 2012-13 season with a 25-10 record, three more wins than the previous school best.
A basket by Glenn Cosey 13 seconds into the second half put the visitors on top 45-43, but EKU hit just three field goals over the next 11:45 as the Purple Aces (20-14) rolled off a 17-6 run.
A dunk by Ryan Sawvell and a free throw from Lewis Jones capped the run and gave Evansville a 60-51 lead with 11:13 left. A quick 5-1 Eastern run closed a 12-point deficit to eight with 5:46 to play. A free throw from Cosey closed the gap to 68-60, but the Purple Aces answered on the other end and led by double figures the rest of the way.
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Cosey led the Colonels with 18 points. Senior Mike DiNunno ended his career with 14 points. Corey Walden added 12 points.
Colt Ryan had a game-high 25 points for Evansville. Troy Taylor added 16 points and seven rebounds.
Eastern Kentucky shot 50 percent from the field, but UE hit on 55 percent of its shots. The Purple Aces outrebounded the Colonels by 21.
The first half featured a game of runs. EKU scored the first eight points and got off to a 16-5 start. The Purple Aces used a 16-5 run of their own to turn a five-point deficit into a six-point lead, 35-29, with 4:09 remaining in the opening half.
The Colonels had the final run of the first stanza, ending with a 9-2 spurt to send the teams into the locker room tied 43-43.
Levi Randolph scored 16 points and Retin Obasohan had a career-high 14 to lead Alabama to a 66-54 victory over Stanford on Saturday in the second round of the National Invitation Tournament.
The Crimson Tide (23-12) will play Maryland on Tuesday night in the quarterfinals, hoping for its second trip to Madison Square Garden in three years.
The Cardinal (19-15), last year’s NIT champion, twice closed to within four points in the second half but went 4:40 without a field goal late. They managed a season-low in points and were held below 60 in both NIT games, including a 58-57 win over Stephen F. Austin.
Tide coach Anthony Grant called it “as complete a game as we’ve had.”
“From start to finish, our defense was outstanding,” Grant said.
Nick Jacobs and Trevor Releford each scored 10 points for the Tide, which has held 23 of 35 opponents to fewer than 60 points.
Randolph has 29 points in the two NIT games after coming in averaging 7.5.
After erasing a double-digit deficit and winning in overtime against East Carolina on Thursday, the Western Kentucky women take to the road to face host Auburn in the second round of the Women’s NIT at 3 p.m.
It will be the fifth overall meeting between the Tigers and Hilltoppers with Auburn winning the four previous meetings. The last meeting was an 82-69 Auburn win at Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum on Jan. 9, 1996.