JAGUARS FALL IN JUNGLE FINALE, 84-60
February 23, 2014HOOSIER SPORTS 365
IUPUI SPORTS RELEASE
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INDIANAPOLIS - Visiting IPFW shot a blistering 64.8 percent from the floor and held the Jaguars to just 40 percent as the Mastodons closed the doors on the Jungle with an 84-60 victory. Luis Jacobo led six Mastodons in double-digits with 13 points and nine boards and both Steve Forbes and Joe Reed added 12 points apiece.
Sophomore guard Marcellus Barksdale led the Jaguars with 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting, and both Donovan Gibbs and Khufu Najee added 11 each.
The day was filled with the celebration of the final home game inside the Jungle, but the action was less than festive on the floor as IPFW (20-9, 8-4 Summit) surged out to a 24-13 lead midway through the first half. After trailing 36-25 at the break, the 'Dons wasted little time in making the game a blowout in the second half.
"We really wanted to play well for our seniors. Mitch got in early foul trouble. We really wanted to limit them from three and they only made two in the first half," IUPUI Head Coach Todd Howard said. "With Mitch playing more, I think the deficit would have been minimal, then you can exhale.
"They got hot in the second half, as they can. They do it every week. Our missed threes and free throws resulted in 15 empty trips in the second half - you can't do that."
IPFW opened the second half with a 16-6 run to take a 52-31 lead, aided largely by back-to-back Reed layups in transition.
The Dons hit 21-of-29 (72.4 percent) from the field in the second half and finished the game with a 39-21 rebounding advantage, leading to a 46-26 scoring advantage in the paint.
Reed, a Greenwood-native, hit 6-of-9 shots, and Forbes was 6-of-8 overall. Michael Kibiloski (11 points) and Mo Evans (10 points) did the bulk of their damage from deep, combining to hit 5-of-8 treys.
IUPUI honored the senior trio prior to the game, with center Mitch Patton also collecting the program's Mel Garland Basketball Award. Patton closed his final home game with nine points and two boards and Gibbs added 11 points on 5-of-8 shooting. P.J. Hubert chipped in a late trey for his only three points. The Jaguars' depth also received a shot in the arm as top scorer Ian Chiles made his first appearance in seven games, scoring two points in 21 minutes off the bench. The junior was 0-of-6 from the floor in his return, but handed out a team-high three assists and blocking a shot.
Redshirt freshman Elijah Ray had six points and six boards in 20 minutes off the bench and freshman Josh James hit a pair of shots for four points.
The loss ended IUPUI's home slate at 5-9 on the year and closed the Jungle at 255-132 since 1982. IPFW captured a regular season sweep over the Jaguars and has won three straight in the series between the two schools.
"The Jungle was great today. Seeing so many former studs was awesome," Howard said. "The support our guys get from the former players means a ton. That's how you build. I'm proud of P.J., Donovan and Mitch - they are true student-athletes and represent their families in the best way, always.
"This group works hard."
More than 40 former players were in attendance as the IUPUI Athletics Department also recognized the program's All-Decade Teams at halftime. Nine of the recipients were and IUPUI Hall of Famers and four were All-Americans during their playing days. The full release is listed here.
The Jaguars will conclude the regular season with a two-game road trip, beginning at Omaha on Thursday, Feb. 27 at 8:07 p.m.. The game can be heard on WNDE 1260 AM and on the free iHeartRadio app as Will Flemming (pxp) calls the action from courtside.