Roberts leads Dayton to 55-48 NIT win over Illinois State

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NORMAL, Ill. (AP)—Dayton went on a 17-0 second-half run to break open a close game en route to a 55-48 victory over Illinois State in an NIT second-round game on Monday night.

Brian Roberts led Dayton (23-10) with 16 points. The Flyers go on the road to face Ohio State (21-13) in a quarterfinal game Wednesday.

The Flyers trailed 32-28 with 17:03 left before Illinois State (25-10) went more than 10 minutes without scoring. The Redbirds missed 12 straight shots before Dinma Odiakosa’s basket with 6:38 left ended the drought. Odiakosa led the Redbirds with 14 points.

Illinois State closed the gap to 51-47 with 57 seconds left, but couldn’t get closer. The Redbirds shot 26 percent in the second half to finish at 34 percent.

Dayton freshman forward Chris Wright, who had been out since Jan. 9 with a broken bone in his right ankle, scored eight points.

Roberts sank 4-of-6 attempts from 3-point range. The senior guard moved into second place on Dayton’s all-time 3-point basket list with 289, two behind Tony Stanley.

Osiris Eldridge, who led Illinois State by averaging 16 points a game, made his first shot, a 3-pointer, before missing his next 13 attempts. Eldridge finished with 10 points.

Eldridge sat out the final 9:25 of the first half after picking up his second foul. Dayton led 14-11 at the time, but Illinois State made five straight shots to take a 19-16 lead.

The advantage went back and forth the rest of the half before Roberts swished a 3-pointer with five seconds left for a 28-all tie at the intermission. Illinois State did most of its damage inside in the first half, outscoring the Flyers 18-6 in the paint as the Redbirds had 10 assists on their 12 baskets.

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