Sophomore Donovan Clay (Alton, Ill. / Alton) scored a game-high 17 points including 16 before halftime, but the Valparaiso University men’s basketball team fell 76-52 to visiting Bradley on Wednesday night at the Athletics-Recreation Center. The Braves (11-11, 5-8) earned a split in the season series after Valpo prevailed in double overtime in the first meeting between the two teams.
How It Happened
- Bradley jumped ahead right away by scoring the game’s first eight points. The Braves owned their first double-figure lead less than four minutes in, and eventually extended that edge to 15-2 at the 15:52 mark.
- Clay accounted for Valpo’s first made field goal of the night with a trey with 15:36 left in the opening half. The deficit expanded back to 12 at 17-5, but Valpo followed with its biggest run of the day to climb back into the game.
- The Brown & Gold strung together 11 straight points to erase nearly all of the large hole, forcing a Brian Wardle timeout after another 3-pointer by Clay reduced the Bradley lead to one at 17-16 with 13:14 left in the half.
- Clay made it 3-for-3 from 3 in the opening half to again cut it to one at 20-19, then Eron Gordon (Indianapolis, Ind. / Cathedral [Seton Hall]) gave Valpo its first lead of the day as he laid one in with 10:53 to go. A half of runs continued when Bradley scored the next 11 points to mount its second double-figure advantage of the evening, this time 31-21.
- Valpo had trimmed the lead to seven at 37-30 when the teams retreated to the locker rooms for the intermission. Clay (16) and Edwards (10) accounted for 26 of the team’s 30 first-half points.
- A Ben Krikke (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada / Jasper Place) basket started the second half scoring and whittled the margin to five, but Bradley followed with a 12-0 burst and led by double figures for the game’s duration.
Inside the Game
- Clay’s 17 points marked his highest output in the last seven games after a 20-point outpouring on Jan. 23 at Illinois State.
- Edwards finished with 10 points for his third straight double-figure outing. He had three double-figure performances in his first 13 games, and now has four in his last six.
- In addition, Edwards swiped three steals for the second straight game. He has four consecutive multi-steal games and 10 of his 16 steals all season have come in the last four games after he had six in the first 15 contests. The freshman also contributed five rebounds.
- Zion Morgan (Chicago, Ill. / Kenwood [Wabash Valley / UNLV]) had a season-high seven rebounds, two shy of his career high that was established on Dec. 21, 2019 at Arkansas. Seven of his 11 rebounds this season (seven games played) came on Wednesday.
- Gordon paced the team on the glass with eight rebounds, his ninth outing this season with seven or more. Eight of those nine have come in the last 11 games. He led the team in rebounds (outright or tied) for the ninth time this season, and this marks the senior’s third straight game with seven or more caroms.
- Bradley received double-figure showings from six players, led by Ville Tahvanainen’s 14.
Valpo (7-13, 4-7 MVC) will attempt to bounce back on Saturday at 7 p.m. at UNI in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The game will be broadcast on the MVC TV Network, which includes NBC Sports Chicago. Links to live video, audio and stats will be available.