Kukobat’s late dunk helps Eastern Illinois to 73-66 win
PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Rade Kukobat completed a 3-point play off a dunk in the final minute to give Eastern Illinois just enough cushion to hold off Bradley 73-66 on Thursday night for its third straight win.
Bradley had closed to 64-62 following two Darrell Brown free throws with 1:03 left before Kukobat slammed home the dunk. Brown hit a jump shot to trail 67-64 with 45 seconds left. Shareef Smith and Josiah Wallace made six free throws down the stretch to clinch the win.
Mack Smith nailed 6 of 9 from behind the arc to total 20 points with Wallace adding 14 points. Shareef Smith and Ben Harvey added 12 points apiece for the Panthers (6-5).
Eastern Illinois drained 13 of 24 from distance (54 percent) while holding the Braves to 5 of 17 (29 percent) from long range.
Bradley took a 36-33 lead into the break. A Harvey 3-pointer gave the Panthers a 40-38 lead less than three minutes into the second half. The teams swapped the lead until Mack Smith nailed two treys to start Eastern Illinois on an 8-0 run for a 58-48 advantage midway through the second half. The Braves never regained the lead.
Koch Bar had 13 points and Brown 12 for Bradley (7-4).