MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (AP) -- Jamaal Tatum scored 26 points,
including 11 of his team's final 14, to lead Southern Illinois past
Central Michigan 64-54 on Sunday.
The Salukis (5-3) used a ball-hawking defense and crisp passing
on offense to build a 36-17 lead with 2:48 left in the first half.Central Michigan (2-6) responded with an 11-2 run, fueled by six
points from Drew Walker, to cut the lead to 38-28 at halftime.
Southern Illinois pushed its lead to 13 points with 13:19 left in
the game, but the Chippewas again made a run at the Salukis.A free throw by Justin Blevins cut Southern Illinois' lead to
two points with 9:41 left, and the Chippewas came within two again
when Eddie Spencer made a layup with 3:55 left.However, that was as close as Central Michigan would get.
Southern Illinois went on a 9-1 run to end the game, with Tatum
hitting a key 3-pointer.Bryan Mullins added 18 points for the Salukis, while Matt Shaw
scored six points with 11 rebounds.Sefton Barrett led the Chippewas with 17 points, and Chris
Kellerman scored 11 points with seven rebounds.The Salukis' defense forced 22 turnovers in the game, including
nine by Chippewas point guard Giordan Watson.