Billikens' Win Streak Snapped by DePaul

LAS VEGAS - Saint Louis' four-game winning streak ended as DePaul hit all six free throw attempts in the final 30 seconds to preserve a 65-61 win over the Billikens at the Las Vegas Classic on Monday evening. The Billikens will play at 6:30 p.m. (CT) Tuesday against either Creighton or Fresno State at the Orleans Arena.

Both teams came out of the gates with their offenses in a flow. Tommie Liddell III and Kevin Lisch both drained 3-pointers to match the treys by DePaul. The Blue Demons led 12-10 at the first media timeout.

The Billikens tied the game 14-14 on a layup by Brian Conklin after a pass in traffic from Kwamain Mitchell at the 11:18 mark. The Blue Demons edged out to a 23-18, before a Lisch turnaround jumper in the lane broke the DePaul run. The Blue Demons pushed the margin to 31-22.

However, Willie Reed had an offensive rebound and dunk in one athletic motion as the Billikens cut the deficit to 31-24. DePaul still held a 33-24 lead in the final minute, but Lisch cut the margin in third by curling off a screen and knocking in a 3-pointer.

DePaul took a 33-27 lead into intermission

Mitchell sank a 3-pointer and scored a fastbreak layup as the Billikens quickly closed to 33-32 in the first 30 seconds of the half. A Liddell fadeaway jumper drew SLU to 35-34, but the Billikens were unable to take the lead on their next possession.

DePaul scored the next five points to rebuild a narrow margin 40-36 six minutes into the second half.

After a drive to the basket and a hoop by Mitchell, Liddell converted two free throws to pull the Billikens to 43-42 with nine minutes left to play.

After DePaul missed the front end of a one-and-one, Barry Eberhardt tipped in a missed shot to give the Billikens their first lead of the evening 44-43 at the 8:15 mark.

DePaul made one free throw, but Lisch swished a long trey from the top of the key to put SLU on top 47-44 with 7:50 to go. On the next DePaul possession, Conklin drew a charge to give the ball back to the Billikens.

SLU still led 49-48 with five to play but DePaul grabbed the lead with two free throws. One free throw by Reed tied the game at 50-50, and on the next trip, one charity toss by Mitchell gave SLU a 51-50 lead with 4:30 left.

Mac Koshwal scored on a jump hook in the lane as the Blue Demons took a 52-51 lead with 2:53 remaining. Koshwal missed his free throw, but DePaul tracked down the rebound and Dar Tucker scored. Conklin answered for the Billikens with a tough basket inside.

DePaul hit two free throws for a 56-53 lead, and a steal and hoop pushed the Blue Demon lead to 58-53 with 1:04 to play. After the teams traded one free throw, Mitchell sank both ends of a one-and-one as the Billikens closed to 59-56 with 31.2 seconds remaining.

Two free throws by DePaul put the Blue Demons' lead at 61-56, and SLU's next shot was blocked. Two more charity tosses by Tucker pushed the DePaul margin to 63-58.

Lisch hit a 3-pointer, and was fouled on the inbounds pass. His two free throws drew the Billikens to 63-61 with 1.1 second left. Tucker hit two free throws with 0.7 seconds left to seal the 65-61 win for DePaul.

For the Billikens, Kevin Lisch scored a game-high 19 points, while Kwamain Mitchell tied his career high with 16 points. Brian Conklin tied his career high with nine rebounds to lead SLU on the boards.

Mac Koshwal notched a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds to lead DePaul. Both teams hit 22 of 56 shots from the field, and while the Billikens made three more 3-pointers, DePaul sank seven more free throws.

The Billikens see their four-game winning streak end and fall to 6-5 on the season. The Blue Demons improve to 7-4.

Box Score | Play-by-Play

Billiken Report Top Stories