Four takeaways from Ball State's 92-74 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff

Junior forward Basheer Jihad circumvents the opposing team. Nov.21 against USC Upstate at Worthen Arena. Isaiah Wallace, DN
Junior forward Basheer Jihad circumvents the opposing team. Nov.21 against USC Upstate at Worthen Arena. Isaiah Wallace, DN

On Friday afternoon, Ball State took the court against Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Friday afternoon. After some big performances on offense and some other factors, the Cardinals defeated the Lions 92-74. 

Here are four takeaways from the contest.

Both teams started with sloppy play 

In the first ten minutes of the contest with the Lions, head coach Michael Lewis was not too happy. The Cardinals made plenty of mistakes, which included six turnovers. Those consisted of out-of-bounds plays, bad passes, and much more. 

While Ball State had those issues, so did the Lions. They mirrored the Cardinals with six turnovers of their own. Both of those stat lines led to each team finding the basket.

The Cardinals finished the first half with nine turnovers, which the Lions used to score eleven points. On the other hand, Arkansas-Pine Bluff recorded seven turnovers. That led to five Ball State points. 

Davion Bailey’s first-half performance 

During the opening half, the junior guard exploded on offense. The Lions had issues finding a way to contain him as he beat his season point average (9.2) as he had 16 points. 

One of his best stat lines was his consistency from deep. He went to the locker room after going 4-for-7 (57.1 percent) from the three-point line. Altogether, he was 6-for-10 (60 percent) from the floor. 

However, Bailey would not be able to add to his total due to being injured in the second half. Even with his performance being shortened, his 16 points were a career-high. 

Success on offense

Bailey wasn’t the only Cardinal to have success with the ball. During the first half, Ball State went 16-for-26 (61.5 percent) from the field. Their inside play was a component of the good fortune as they had 36 points in the paint. 

However, it wasn’t just that. The Cardinals had some luck with their three-point shooting. From deep, the red and white went 6-for-12 (50.0 percent).

After halftime, the Cardinals continued to be a force when attacking the hoop. They finished their fifth win going 33-for-54 (61.1 percent) and 12-for-22 (54.5 percent) from outside. 

Junior Basheer Jihad led the way with 18 points. He also grabbed 11 rebounds for his first collegiate double-double. He was followed by junior Mickey Pearson with 17 points. 

The Lions could not stop fouling

During the contest, the officials were not afraid to let their whistle scream through Worthen Arena. However, most of those did not negatively impact the Cardinals as they went against the Lions instead. 

A lot of the fouls came when the Cardinals went inside, which allowed them to visit the free-throw line frequently. The Lions left the court after being called for 21 fouls while the Cardinals only had 12. With the high foul number, Ball State went 14-for-22 (63.6 percent) from the foul line.

Ball State will be back in action when they travel to face Little Rock on Tuesday, Nov. 28. Tip-off is set for 7:30. 

Contact Zach Carter with comments at zachary.carter@bsu.edu or on X @ZachCarter85.

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