Springfield, MO (Sports Network) - Anthony Downing put in 16 points to lead the Missouri State Bears past the Southern Illinois Salukis, 70-59, in the Missouri Valley Conference opener at JQH Arena.
Nathan Scheer added 15 points off the bench and Marcus Marshall contributed 11 points for Missouri State (3-10, 1-0 MVC) which snapped an eight game losing streak.
Kendal Brown-Surles tallied 12 points and Anthony Beane Jr. chipped in 11 points for Southern Illinois (7-5, 0-1) which has lost three of its last four.
Both teams shot well in the first half. Missouri State hit 54.2 percent of its shots from the field, including 6-of-11 from beyond the arc. Southern Illinois shot at a 52.2 percent rate and nailed 7-of-11 shots from 3-point range. The Bears led 39-32 at the break thanks to a 7-1 edge in points from the free throw line.
In the second half Missouri State shot 53.8 percent, including a 4-of-6 showing from beyond the arc and had a 13-6 edge from the free throw line to pull away for the win.
The Bears outscored the Salukis 30-24 from beyond the arc and 20-7 from the charity stripe.