MVC: Missouri State beats Drake 69-67; Evansville is next

Dequon Miller (shown in a game earlier this season) scored 14 points for the Bears.

Jasen Vinlove/Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

ST. LOUIS — Chris Kendrix hit five 3-pointers and finished with 21 points, and Ryan Kreklow hit a late 3 to help seventh-seeded Missouri State beat No. 10 seed Drake 69-67 Thursday night in the first round of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament.

The Bears will play second-seeded Evansville (23-8) in the quarterfinals Friday.

Kreklow scored 10 of his 13 points in the second half, and Dequon Miller had 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists for Missouri State.

Drake (7-23) scored five straight points to take a 66-64 lead with 1:48 to play and Kreklow answered with a 3-pointer 17 seconds later. After the Bulldogs committed turnovers on back-to-back possessions, Loomis Gerring made a pair of foul shots to make it 69-66 with 11 seconds to go and Missouri State (12-18) held on from there.

Dominik Olejniczak led Drake with 18 points, on 9-of-13 shooting, and eight rebounds. Casey Schlatter had a career-high 11 assists.