DELAND, Fla. - Stetson's Abayomi Iyiola scored a game-high 22 points as the Hatters downed Western Illinois, 68-64, Wednesday at Edmunds Center.
The Hatters (2-8) trailed by as many as 16 points late in the first half, but a 17-0 run covering both halves and a stout defensive effort down the stretch helped Stetson taste victory for the first time in nearly a month.
Western Illinois (4-5) led 38-22 with 3:06 remaining in the first half. Stetson closed the half on an 8-0 run to get within 38-30 at halftime, then opened the second half by scoring the first nine points. Iyiola capped the run with a jumper at 17:08 of the second half, giving Stetson its first lead of the game at 39-38.
From there, the lead changed hands seven more times before the Hatters took control in the final minutes.
Trailing 61-56 with 4:14 to go, Christiaan Jones hit a three-pointer and Iyiola followed with a three-point play as the Hatter took a 62-61 lead with 2:29 left.
A defensive stop on the other end for the Hatters led to yet another Iyiola layup with 1:31 remaining, giving the Hatters a 64-61 advantage. But Western's Isaac Johnson tied it up with a trey.
Tied at 64-64, Stetson's next possession nearly went awry but Leo Goodman, with the shot clock winding down, nailed what proved to be the game-winning three-pointer with 44 seconds left.
With Stetson leading, 67-64, Western had two good looks to tie on the other end but both came up short. Kenny Aninyesank 1-of-2 free throws with 13 seconds to play for the final margin.
Stetson heled Western Illinois to just in the game's final four minutes.
Iyiola was 9 of 17 from the field and added a game-high 11 rebounds. Marques Sumner chipped in 11 points and Goodman added 10.
Kobe Webster led the Leathernecks with 22 points.
- Tonight marked the first ever meeting between Stetson and WIU.
- With 9:32 remaining in the first half, Jalen Crutchfield knocked down a corner 3. It was the first basket of his collegiate career. He finished with 3 points.
- Abayomi Iyiola extended his double-digit scoring streak to 5 games. This is tied for the longest streak in his career. It is also his sixth game of the season with double figures and 14th career game. He finished with a team high 22 points.
- Iyiola also reached the 20-point mark for the second time this season and third time in his career
- In addition to his scoring, Iyiola also finished with 11 rebounds, his fourth double-double of 2018 and eighth of his career
- Iyiola made his first career three-pointer in this game.
- Marques Sumner finished with 11 points, his fourth game this season in double figures
- Leo Goodman finished with 11 points, his fourth game this season with at least 10, and the 28th-such effort of his career.
The Hatters host Marist, 1 p.m., Saturday.