DePaul suffered their sixth loss of the season Friday night as they fell to the Missouri State Bears 67-58.
Unlike their last meeting with them back in late November, DePaul couldn’t manufacture a victory in the late goings of the game. The Blue Demons let it slip away in the first half and fell in a deficit as big as 15 points towards the end of the first half. This proved to be too difficult a hole to dig out of as they will now take a two-game losing streak into Big East play Wednesday.
Leading the way for DePaul was Billy Garrett who scored 16 points in the losing effort. Garrett was complemented by Brandon Cyrus and Tre’Darius McCallum who joined the senior guard in double figures with 10 and 11 points respectively. Eli Cain’s woeful performance in Vegas continued on as he scored just six points on 10 field goal attempts, converting on just one of those aforementioned shots all night.
Alize Johnson, Obediah Church and Ryan Kreklow were the leading men for the Bears. The three Bears weren’t bare on the scoring sheet, combining to score 46 points, 17, 16 and 13 respectively, and shot 18-for-31 from the field to boot.
What we learned
Eli Cain’s impact was sorely missed
DePaul’s sophomore sensation went missing in these two games in Vegas, and when it comes down to it, that’s one of the main reasons for DePaul chalking up two losses. Cain has been one of their best players this season, if not the very best, and with him scoring just 11 combined points in their two efforts, it’s an impactful absence on the statsheet. Combine that with the fact that he shot just 3-for-28 in the past two games, and you have a recipe for disaster.
DePaul’s interior defense wasn’t too effective to say the least
Perimeter defense wasn’t the issue for DePaul at all on Friday night. Missouri State shot just 1-for-16 from the field, and 24-for-37 inside. That, too, is a recipe for disaster and will be something that the Blue Demons will have to shore up going forward if they want any semblance of success. They were bullied inside by Missouri State, which goes against their usual output going into the game. And that’s why we’re where we’re at.
The woes could be continuing on
DePaul’s first Big East game sees them traveling to The Pavilion to face Villanova. Nice treat, isn’t it? Afterwards, they’ll host St. John’s and then face Seton Hall, Providence and Marquette, three teams that will give them a hoard of trouble. The Red Storm are beatable where they’re at right now, but even then, DePaul has looked worse at times. Time will tell, but the Blue Demons could be in for yet another dreadful start to Big East play.