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SUU downs W. Illinois to even league mark

SHARE SUU downs W. Illinois to even league mark

Southern Utah evened its Mid-Continent Conference record at 2-2 (5-11 overall) Saturday night but to do it the Thunderbirds had to fight back after a sloppy start, overcome 17 turnovers and withstand a Western Illinois charge at the end before prevailing 68-83. Western Illinois jumped to a 17-6 lead after SUU either missed shots or turned it over on four of its first seven possessions but Jason Baker hit a 3-pointer to spark the Thunderbirds on an 8-2 run and the 'Birds finally caught WIU at 30-30 when Aaron Miles nailed another three.

SUU went on to take a 41-36 halftime advantage and led by as many as 11 in the second half before the Leathernecks came back, cutting the deficit to 65-63 on a Karl Petersen layup with 37 seconds to play. Petersen had a chance to cut into the lead even further as Kevin Henry fouled him on the shot, but after a Southern Utah time out he missed the free throw and Dan Beus rebounded and was fouled immediately.

Summers scored 15 to lead the Leathernecks, who fell to 10-6 overall and 1-2 in conference play.