Saturday , Mar , 03 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

Salukis hold off Bradley for 13th straight win

St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) – Matt Shaw’s tip in with 3.2 seconds left
helped 11th-ranked Southern Illinois hold off Bradley, 53-51, in Missouri
Valley Conference semifinal action at Scottrade Center.

Shaw finished with 11 points while Jamaal Tatum netted 20 points on 7-of-15
shooting from the floor for the Salukis (27-5), who have won 13 straight.

Southern Illinois now moves on to the final and will play either Creighton or
Missouri State on Sunday.

Jeremy Crouch had 14 points on 4-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc for the
Braves (21-12), who lost for just the second time in their last seven games.
Daniel Ruffin contributed 12 points and seven boards for Bradley.

Trailing by two points with about 7 1/2 minutes to play, Bryan Mullins drove
hard to the lane and scooped in two points for the Salukis to even the score
at 42-42.

Bradley then took a 47-45 lead after a wide-open Crouch nailed a three-pointer
from the right corner with 2:41 left. Tatum answered for Southern Illinois
with a trey of his own to put the Salukis in front by one point.

Two free throws by J.J. Tauai with just under a minute remaining pushed
Bradley in front, 49-48. At the other end, the Braves put Tatum on the line
and he sank both shots to give Southern Illinois a 50-49 edge with 40.1 ticks
on the clock.

With 25.7 seconds left, Bradley’s Danny Adams was fouled inside after he
grabbed a rebound and missed both shots from the charity stripe. The Braves
then put Randal Falker at the line and he went 1-for-2 to make it 51-49.

Zach Andrews then quickly stormed down the court and laid in two points for
Bradley to tie the score at 51-51 with just under 15 seconds to go.

At the other end, Tatum missed a 15-foot jumper from the elbow but Shaw
grabbed the rebound and scored two off the glass with just 3.2 ticks

A desperation half-court shot by Crouch slammed hard off the back board as the
Salukis held on for the victory.

With Bradley leading the majority of the opening half, Southern Illinois tied
the score at 26-26 just before halftime after Tatum drilled a jumper in the

The Braves shot an impressive 5-of-11 from beyond the arc in the opening 20
minutes and held the Salukis to just 30 percent shooting from the floor.

Tatum kept Southern Illinois in the contest with eight points in the first

Game Notes

Both teams struggled from the floor with Southern Illinois shooting 34.6
percent and Bradley shooting 35.6 percent…Attendance was 22,612 which set a
new semifinal round record for the MVC Tournament.