Normal, IL - Illinois State outscored Delaware State 31-6 in the last eight minutes of the first half en route to an 87-48 win over the Hornets in the opening round of the South Padre Island Invitational at Doug Collins Court this afternoon.
The Redbirds improved to 3-0, while DSU lost for the first time in four games this season.
Each of the 12 players who competed for Illinois State scored at least two points, led by Tyler Brown's game-high 14.
Freshman Miles Bowman came off the bench to lead Delaware State with 10 points. Bowman was five-for-five from the field. He was also second on the team with five rebounds.
The rest of the Hornets combined to hit just 14 of their 51 shots.
Marques Oliver and Tahj Tate added eight points each for DSU. Oliver also led the team with eight rebounds to tie for game-high honors. Amere May led the Hornets with four assists.
The game was close for the first 11 minutes, with neither team leading by more than four points.
Illinois State led 18-16 taking control of the game. The Redbirds scored 24 of the next 28 points, and opened up a 42-20 lead on a tip-in by Jon Ekey with 1:43 left in the first half. Illinois State hit nine of 10 shots from the field, while the Hornets were one-for-seven with four turnovers during the Redbird rally.
Illinois State's Nick Zeisloft hit a three-pointer as time expired in the first half to give the Redbirds a 49-22 lead at the break.
Delaware State's Kendall Gray converted a three-point play on the opening possession of the second half to pull the Hornets to within 49-25 with 19:40 left to play.
The Redbirds answered with a 10-2 run, and opened up a 59-27 lead on a dunk by Brown with 17:03 remaining in the game.
The Hornets could get no closer the rest of the way.
Delaware State improved to 41.7% shooting in the second half (10-for-24) after connecting on 28.1% in the opening frame (9-for-32).
The Hornets will face Northwestern in a South Padre Island Invitational contest on Tuesday (Nov. 20). Game time is 8:00 p.m. in Evanston, Ill.
DSU will wrap up the tournament on Friday and Saturday (Nov. 23-24) in South Padre Island, Tex.