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MO State tops Illinois State in MVC

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ST. LOUIS (AP) - Freshman Austin Ruder matched his career-high with 21 points and fourth-seeded Missouri State made just enough free throws down the stretch Thursday for a 53-48 win over fifth-seeded Illinois State in the Missouri Valley Conference tournament quarterfinals.

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The Bears (20-11) face top-seeded and second-ranked Wichita State in the semifinals.

Ruder hit a 3-pointer with 2:05 lead to put Missouri State up 48-46. After a miss by the Redbirds (16-15), Keith Pickens had a tip-in to make it 50-46 with 42 seconds remaining. After that, the Bears made 3 of 6 free throws, two by Dorrian Williams after Zach Lofton's jumper for Illinois State made it 50-48 with 11 seconds to play.

Zach Lofton came off the bench to score a career-high 25 for Illinois State, which trailed 22-17 at the half.

Neither team shot even 33 percent, combining for 14 of 46 3's and 19 of 36 free throws.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
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