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Davis, Northern lead Tech to seven-point win over EIU Panthers

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Double-doubles by sophomore Alex Davis and senior Daniel Northern highlighted the night as the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles downed visiting Eastern Illinois Monday night in the Eblen Center, 67-60, in Ohio Valley Conference play.

Davis tied his career-high with 13 points and grabbed a career-best 10 rebounds, while Northern came through with 10 points and 11 rebounds for coach Mike Sutton's squad, which improved to 8-5 overall and 2-1 in the Ohio Valley Conference. Tech improved to 7-2 at home this season.

With the victory, Tech climbed into a tie for third place, pulling to within half a game of first place with a 2-1 league record.

Tech put five players in double digits. In addition to Davis and Northern, DJ Lindsay scored 15, Will Barnes had 13 and Frank Davis netted 10.

Eastern Illinois saw its record slip to 5-9 overall and 2-2 in the league. Two Panthers were in double figures, led by Romain Martin with 17. T.J. Marion scored 13.

The Panthers put a scare into the home team, slicing into what seemed to be a comfortable 16-point lead during the final five minutes. EIU pulled to within six points twice in the final minute before Tech was able to hold on by making three of four free throws.

After seeing six ties during the first 11 minutes of the contest, EIU broke an18-all deadlock with a pair of free throws by Romain Martin and the Panthers held the advantage for the final nine minutes of the period. A Martin basket at the 1:31 mark made it a five-point lead, before Northern scored the final four points of the half to make it 32-31 at the break.

EIU's largest lead of the first half was eight points, coming at the 5:19 mark, when Jay Smith's 3-pointer made it 28-20.

EIU held onto the lead for the first six minutes of the second half before Lindsay's jumper with 13:41 put the Golden Eagles on top, 41-40. It was a lead Tech never surrendered.

Up 46-45 with 10:47 remaining, Tech went on a 16-1 run over the next five minutes and took a 62-46 lead with 5:13 to play.

The Panthers got back-to-back baskets by Oassame Cisse, then two straight jumpers by Jeremy Granger, and a 10-0 EIU run cut Tech's lead down to six, 64-58, with 58 seconds left.

The Golden Eagles head out on the road this weekend, with games at Morehead State Thursday night and Eastern Kentucky on Saturday.

Tech's next home game will be nationally televised when the Golden Eagles host UT Martin Thursday, Jan. 15, in an 8 p.m. contest to be aired on ESPNU.