Green Bay Routs Host Chicago State 98-62 for 7th-Straight Win
CHICAGO, Ill. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – With a strong contingent of Phoenix fans in the stands at the Jones Convocation Center on Tuesday, Green Bay (12-3) played like its season-long homestand was still going. The Phoenix won its seventh-straight game and handed Chicago State (6-9) its first home loss of the season, overwhelming the Cougars with a 58-33 second half en route to a 98-62 victory in the non-conference finale for Green Bay.
The 36-point road is the largest margin of victory for the Phoenix over a Division I program during its entire Division I era. The last road win by 36 or more points overall was a 90-53 victory at Division II Hawaii-Hilo on Nov. 29, 1998.
Junior Keifer Sykes (Chicago, Ill.) and senior Alec Brown (Winona, Minn.) each scored 20 or more points for the second-straight game, with the Chicago native Sykes totaling 21 points and nine assists and the 7-foot-1 Brown added 20 points on 8-of-12 shooting. Sykes registered a 9-of-13 shooting performance as the All-Horizon League duo combined to shoot 17-of-25 from the field.
Trailing 11-9 early on, Green Bay got seven points from another Chicago native – junior Greg Mays (Chicago, Ill.) – during a 16-0 run which turned the deficit into a 25-11 lead with 9:23 to play before halftime. The Cougars closed the margin to nine with just over a minute to play, but Brown’s emphatic dunk with nine seconds on the clock sent the Phoenix to the locker room with a 40-29 lead.
Mays, who finished with 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting including three dunks, had 11 points at intermission as he combined with Sykes (13) and Brown (10) to score 34 of the visitors’ 40 first-half points.
The opening play of the second half set the tone for the final 20 minutes, with Green Bay perfectly executing a play drawn up by head coach Brian Wardle. The play ended with the 5-foot-11 Sykes throwing down a lob pass from senior Vincent Garrett (Chicago, Ill.).
Eight minutes into the second period, Green Bay’s lead was 61-50 when Mays’ recorded his third dunk and was fouled before the under-12 media timeout. The Mays’ dunk started a 29-4 spurt which turned a relatively close game into a rout (90-54) with 5:07 remaining.
Midway through the run, there was a stretch where Green Bay scored seven points in 31 seconds. Sykes drained his lone triple of the game from the right wing, a Brown steal led to a Sykes layup on the other end, and sophomore Jordan Fouse (Racine, Wis.) stole the ensuing inbounds pass. Fouse passed to Sykes, who immediately found sophomore Carrington Love (Milwaukee, Wis.) for a corner three-pointer.
In support of the high-scoring Phoenix trio, Love made three triples and finished with 10 points and Fouse filled the stat sheet yet again with six points, nine rebounds, six assists, two blocks and one steal. Garrett, another Chicago native, had all seven of his points after halftime and added six boards.
Green Bay outrebounded Chicago State 47-26 and dominated the paint scoring (52-20). The nation’s second-leading shot blocking team had eight rejections with Brown, Fouse, Mays and Garrett each swatting two shots.
The Phoenix shot over 55 percent from the field for the fourth-straight game, making 38-of-68 shots from the field (55.9%) and dishing out 20 assists. Seven of the made field goals were dunks, giving Green Bay 53 dunks in 15 games this season. In 2012-13, the Phoenix had 50 dunks in 34 games. Chicago State was held to just 33.9 percent (20-59) from the field.
Green Bay will return to Horizon League action but stay on the road to continue a four-game road trip, playing at Milwaukee on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.
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