EVANSVILLE, Ind. – King College battled to the end again, but the Tornado was overtaken at Southern Indiana University 78-70 Sunday.
Jason Seymore (Powell, Tenn.) led the Tornado with 15 points. He was 5-for-6 from the field including a perfect 3-for-3 mark behind the three-point line. Seymore also added a pair of free throws, five rebounds and four assists in 37 minutes of action.
Michael Fortune (Beckley, W.Va.) contributed 13 points off the Tornado bench. All three of his field goals were 3-pointers and he went 4-for-4 at the free throw line.
Clarence Smith (Nashville, Tenn.) finished the game with 11 points and five rebounds.
Sunday's game was the second in as many days for the Tornado. King rallied, but fell short at Kentucky Wesleyan College the night before. Southern Indiana, a team that has been to 21 NCAA Tournaments and ranked No. 9 a season ago, went to 2-0 in the 2010-11 campaign.
Next on the schedule for King is the 2010 Alaska Invitational hosted by the University o f Alaska Fairbanks. The Tornado's first game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. local time on Thursday against host Alaska Fairbanks. The next day King battles West Florida then ends the event with a Saturday meeting with Arkansas Fort Smith.
Four different Southern Indiana players scored in double digits led by Nick Duncheon with 18. Mohamed Ntumba had 14 points and 10 rebounds. Isaac McClure chipped in 14 points from the bench while Kevin Gant finished with 10 points.
As a team King shot 22-for-51 (43.1 percent) while Southern Indiana was 27-for-53 (50.9 percent). The Tornado knocked down 10 3-pointers in 22 attempts (45.5 percent). Southern Indiana was just 4-for-11 (36.4 percent) from long range. The home team did go 20-for-33 (60.6 percent) while King was 16-for-22 (72.7 percent).
The Tornado's pressure forced 16 turnovers while just committing 15.
In the first half, the teams traded the lead numerous times in the opening 10 minutes until Southern Indiana took an 18-17 advantage thanks to a layup by Isaac McClure. From there the home team pushed the lead to eight before a media timeout with 7:21 left in the half. A pair of free throws by Fortune after the break got King back within six, but the lead grew to 14, 39-19, three minutes later. Fortune answered with a three to get King as close as it would down the stretch of the half as Southern Indiana led 41-27 at the halftime break.
King faced a double-digit deficit that was as many as 16 points, 48-32, early in the final half. A long-range shot by Seymore got the Tornado within single digits, 59-50, with 10:48 left on the clock. Four of the Tornado's baskets in the 18-11 run came behind the three-point line from four different players including Seymore.
Seymore used a pass from Brian Hewitt (Lexington, Ky.) off a steal for a lay up to force a Southern Indiana timeout. Hewitt finished with a team-best six assists. Fortune hit a pair of free throws to get King within five, 59-54, with 9:50 to go.
Southern Indiana regained an eight-point lead with 6:47 to go, 66-58. A pair of lay ups brought the Tornado cut into the lead, down to four, 66-62, with 6:02 to go.
The Tornado used a Mark Dockery (Nickelsville, Va.) three pointer to make it a 69-68 score in favor of Southern Indiana with under four minutes. King called a timeout only to see Southern Indiana answer with a three on their next possession. From there the deficit never went under four points the rest of the game as Southern Indiana went 4-for-5 at the free throw line in the final 31 seconds.
In all the lead changed hands six times and the contest was tied five times with all occurring in the first half.
For the game Southern Indiana used 15 offensive rebounds for 17 second-chance points. King only had one second-chance point with four offensive rebounds. Overall King grabbed 21 rebounds while Southern Indiana had 45. The points in the paint favored the home team as well 28-12.