Racers maintain league lead with 88-66 win over Golden Eagles

Golden Eagles head home for the next four contests

MURRAY, Ky. – Despite 22 points from Kevin Murphy and 20 by Elijah Muhammad, Tennessee Tech couldn’t keep pace with league-leading Murray State Saturday night and the host Racers rolled to a 88-66 Ohio Valley Conference victory in the Regional Special Events Center.

An early 12-1 run by the Racers pushed the home team to a double-digit lead and Murray State never allowed Tech to get closer than 10.

Murray State (16-3 overall/8-0 OVC) got its usual balanced effort on offense with five players netting double figures. Ivan Aska had 16 points and nine rebounds and Donte Poole added 13 points, all in the second half. Isacc Miles and Tony Easley finished with 12 each and Isaiah Cannon added 10.

Murphy had a solid game, shooting 9-for-11 from the field including all three of his 3-point tries, to finish with a game-high 22 points. Muhammad scored a career-high with 20, shooting 6-for-9 from the floor including a 3-pointer and 7-for-8 at the free throw line.

The Golden Eagles (8-10 overall/2-5 OVC) led in the early minutes of the contest, but a dunk by Isacc Miles put the Racers on top 11-10 with 13:34 to play in the first half and they never trailed after that. When the 12-1 run was finished, Murray State was ahead 19-10 with just under 10 minutes remaining.

Up by nine, 34-25, the Racers put together another brief run by outscoring Tech 7-0 and the lead grew to 41-25. At halftime, MSU was on top by 17 points.

The Golden Eagles pulled to within 10 points early in the second half, 50-40, when Muhammad hit a layup with 17:30 to play. Down 13, the Golden Eagles saw MSU outscore Tech 9-1 over the next two minutes as the lead climbed to 21 points.

Tech made one final charge to pull with 13 points, 77-64, in the final four minutes but the Racers notched the next eight points to ice the win.

The Golden Eagles will look forward to returning to their home floor for the next four games. The homestand begins Thursday night with a 7:30 p.m. contest against Austin Peay.

Tickets are on sale at the Athletic Ticket Office in Eblen Center or by calling (931) 372-3940.