Prim Posts 20; Bears Take Down GW in Third-Place Game

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NAPLES, Fla. – Led by 20 points from Gaige Prim, Missouri State (4-2) dispatched George Washington, 72-54, here Wednesday in the third-place game of the inaugural Naples Invitational.
 
Prim finished 9-of-17 from the field with a game-high 9 rebounds. He was supplemented by teammates Jaylen Minnett with 16 points and Ja’Monta Black with 14. Minnett and Black hit four 3-pointers apiece, while Lu’Cye Patterson dished out a game-high 5 assists in 25 minutes of action.
 
The Bears also defended effectively, holding the Colonials (2-6) to 37.9 percent from the field, while forcing 14 turnovers.
 
After leading by 13 at the midway point, the Bears saw GW go on a 10-4 run to start the second half to pull within 36-29 just four-and-a-half minutes into the final period. Missouri State then reeled off a decisive 12-0 run in the span of about 90 seconds, capitalizing on a pair of George Washington technical fouls and getting five tallies from Black during the run.
 
The Colonials got a free throw to break up the MSU run, but Missouri State quickly jumped back into the saddle. The Bears reeled off eight more unanswered points on a jumper from Minnett, a triple from Black and another trey from Minnett to make it 56-30 with 10:33 to play, MoState’s largest lead of the game.
 
The Bears cleared the bench down the stretch and got four points from Dawson Carper to push the maroon side over 70 points for the sixth time in six games.
 
Missouri State finished 26-of-61 (.426) from the field, 8-for-22 (.364) from bonus range and 12-for-15 (.800) at the line with a 39-32 rebounding advantage.
 
GW was led by 17 points from James Bishop who hit three 3-pointers, while Joe Bamisile and Noel Brown tallied 12 apiece for the Colonials.
 
After a pair of lead changes in the game’s early going, Missouri State finally gained the lead for good eight minutes into the first half on back-to-back 3-pointers from Minnett that made it an 18-12 contest. Donovan Clay then took over, scoring MSU’s next six points.
 
The final eight minutes of the opening stanza belonged exclusively to the Bears, outscoring GW by a 14-5 margin down the stretch with Prim accounting for eight points in that span before the intermission.
 
Missouri State out-rebounded the Colonials by a 24-12 margin in the first half, while holding the A-10 squad to just 8-of-26 (.308) from the field.

In other results Wednesday at the Naples Invitational, Long Beach State defeated Wright State, 85-76, in the 7th-place game, and Murray State topped James Madison, 74-62, in the fifth-place game. Kent State and ETSU play the nightcap for the tournament title.
 
The Bears will now have a week to prepare for their Missouri Valley Conference opener at Illinois State on Wednesday, Dec. 1. MoState finally returns to JQH Arena on Saturday, Dec. 4 when it hosts BYU in a nationally-televised game at 3 p.m.
 
Tickets for the BYU game are available at MissouriStateBears.com or by visiting the Old Missouri Bank Box Office at JQH Arena, (417) 836-7678, during regular box office hours.
 

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This article is provided by Missouri State