ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Jarrod Jones scored 19 points and Ball State defeated Southern Utah 73-54 on Friday in the consolation round of the Great Alaska Shootout.
The Cardinals (3-2) reeled off the first 11 points, including seven by Jones, and were never headed. Five points by Jordan Weirick closed the gap to 19-16 with 7:35 remaining in the first half, but the Thunderbirds (1-4) never got closer.
"I'm proud of the way our guys played today, I know that might sound funny coming from a coach whose team just lost by 19 points, but I thought our guys played a lot harder today than we did the other night," SUU coach Roger Reid said.
Ball State led 38-22 at halftime and took its biggest lead of the game at 64-35 on a drive by Randy Davis with 6:40 remaining in the second half.
Jones, who had 13 points in the first half, shot 9-for-11 from the field for the game.
"Ball State is a very good team, they played defense well and they shot the ball very well," Reid said. "All the credit goes to them. Of course they shot 57 percent and held us to 43, which explains a lot too."
Davis finished with 11 points and 11 assists. Jauwan Scaife added 14 points.
Ray Jones led Southern Utah with 16 points, and Matt Massey scored 14.
"Our team needs to learn from this," Reid said. "They executed their offense and we need to learn to execute our offense. If we can learn from this loss we can use this experience to make our team better."
Southern Utah will play Houston Baptist in the 7th/8th-place game at 2 p.m. Saturday.