MONMOUTH, Ill. – Monmouth handed the Eureka men's basketball team its first loss of the season Friday night, topping the Red Devils 83-71.
EC's Dakota Bennington (Peoria, Ill./Peoria Christian) racked up a team-high 25 points on 11-for-21 shooting, while Jordan Dehm (Metamora, Ill./Metamora) and Ian Milsteadt (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria) added 16 and 13 points, respectively.
But the home team had the upper hand for the majority of this one.
While Monmouth only shot a slightly higher percentage from the field (47.5 to 45.5), the Fighting Scots took control by knocking down 11 3-pointers and shooting 73.7. In contrast, EC made five triples and were 6-for-14 from the free-throw line. The home team also recorded a 47-30 rebounding advantage.
Eureka was in control early on. The Red Devils led by as many as six before things a took turn toward the end of the first half.
Monmouth's Tyler Houston knocked down a 3-pointer to break a 30-30 tie with 2:27 left in the first half. After a Dee Hyler triple with 1:55 left, EC took a timeout to regroup, and a Will Carius bucket before the half made it 38-30 at the break.
The Fighting Scots stretched the lead to as many as 19 in the second half, and the Red Devils were never able to close the gap.
Five Monmouth players reached double figures. Carrius led the way with 20 points, 10 coming at the free-throw line. D.J. Swift followed with 19 points and five made 3s. Justin Batterton added 15 and Hyler and Houston each had 10.
Austin Juergens (Pekin, Ill./Pekin) distributed a team-high five assists for the Red Devils. Dehm led the team in rebounding with five.
The Red Devils (1-1) have a quick turnaround, as they face Knox on the road on Saturday at 6 p.m.