The Ball State Cardinals are only five games into their non-conference schedule and they're already almost halfway to last year's win total. James Whitford's crew took out South Carolina State 72-60 on Sunday for their second straight win on the season and third overall.
Bo Calhoun led the way for Cardinals, scoring 16 points while shooting 5 for 8 from the field (63 percent). Calhoun not only showed us he can score but also chipped in a career-high 13 rebounds to register his second double-double for the year. The senior has had an impressive season thus far averaging nine points and 8.5 rebounds per game. This season so far resembles his junior season where he shot 52 percent while averaging ten points and six rebounds per game.
Not to over shadow Calhoun's performance, but this was a complete team effort with four double-digit scorers. Ryan Weber (10), Sean Sellers (12) and Franko House (18) combined to shoot 13 for 27 which powered the Cardinals to the victory.
The game had a mix of runs throughout the contest as the Cardinals broke out to an early 7-0 start on three made field goals. The lead reached nine before the Bulldogs went on a 11-2 run to tie the game at 19-all at the 14:13 mark of the first half. Sellers and House combined for the next 13 points with Naiel Smith making a jumper right before the buzzer to get the Cardinals a six point halftime lead.
The game hit a pivotal point in the second half with four minutes left as the game reached it's closest point with the Cardinals and Bulldogs tied at 54. The Cardinals then went on a 18-6 run to close the game and achieve their third victory on the young season. Jeremiah Davis contributed six points in that final four-minute stretch including some clutch free throws to pad the lead with time running out.
The Bulldogs had five double digit scores to pace their attack but it wasn't enough as the rest of the team only contributed seven points. Gabe McCray had the most complete game, chipping in 11 points, six rebounds and only one turnover in a very efficient game.
The Cardinals now return home to face IU Kokomo (0-3) and Valparaiso (5-1) this week on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively.