Drake-Missouri State: Bulldogs Upset Bears for Second-Straight Win

Tim Weideman@TimWeidemanAnalyst IJanuary 13, 2010

Rewind a couple of days to last Saturday night when the Drake Bulldogs came from behind to beat the Southern Illinois Salukis, 70-65.

Now, fast forward to last night.

The Drake Bulldogs hit 64 percent (14-of-22) of their three-point attempts to overcome a 13-3 Missouri State Bears squad in Des Moines, IA to notch their second straight victory, 88-77.

Let's not get ahead of ourselves, but one more win is a streak.

The win improved Drake to 7-11 and 2-4 in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Even though Missouri State took advantage of one of the Bulldogs' glaring weaknesses by dominating in the paint, 52-24, Adam Templeton led four Drake players in double-digits with 16 points to simply outscore the Bears.

Templeton, Ryan Wedel, and Josh Young combined for nine three-pointers. On the night, Wedel contributed 15 points and Young tallied 14.

Missouri State guard Nafis Ricks and center Caleb Patterson came off the bench and led all scorers with 17 points apiece.

However, Drake once again fell to an opponent in the rebounding category, 21-34.

But, hey, when you can drain your shots 60 percent of the time and your opponent can only hope to keep up with 46.8 percent—still a respectable figure—not much else matters, right?

As long as winning becomes a trend for the Bulldogs, they won't find many complaints.

Still, it wouldn't hurt to address these issues.

Coach Mark Phelps has maintained all season long that his team is learning and getting better. It's hard to argue that after the Bulldogs picked up wins over two always-tough MVC opponents.

Who would've thought we'd be talking of a possible winning streak in conference play?

To achieve that milestone, the Bulldogs will have to go through a 12-4 Illinois State Redbirds team that sits in third place in the MVC.

A win could prove the Bulldogs really can play with just about anyone in the MVC.

Perhaps they've already proven that.

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