Another night, another win for the IPFW men's basketball team.
Sort of. Kind of.
The Mastodons disposed of a tenacious Western Illinois team, 77-64, and "another win" only partially described it. Not only was it the Mastodons' 18th victory of the season, tying the school record for Division I victories, it left the Mastodons (18-7, 6-1 Summit League) alone in first in the Summit League.
North Dakota State, with whom the Mastodons were tied for first, lost 67-63 tonight to Denver.
Not that those milestones weren't tough nuts to crack.
IPFW never trailed after Luis Jacobo's 3-pointer gave the the Mastodons a 3-2 lead 63 seconds into the game, but the Leathernecks did not go quietly. It was still a two-point game, 62-60, with 6:37 showing, and it looked destined to get even tighter when a missed IPFW shot on the ensuing possession kicked off into the ether.
But Joe Reed managed to pull it out of the sky, then drove for the bucket, drew a foul and dropped the free throw. It kicked off an 8-1 run for the Mastodons, who went on to score 15 of the final 19 points of the game to finish it.
Jacobo led the Dons with 23 points, including a career-high six 3s, and Steve Forbes added 18 and six rebounds. The Mastodons forced 11 turnovers, outrebounded Western Illinois 32-19 including 12-3 on the offensive end, and limited the Leathernecks, who hit five of its first six 3s, to 3-of-12 from the arc thereafter.
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