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Home court is unkind to men’s basketball

It was a late offensive drought on Saturday night that spoiled a victory for the Portland State men’s basketball team on its home floor. The Vikings, who trailed for most of the game, were overtaken by a 21-5 run in the late stretch of the game by Eastern Washington to lose, 78-62. Eastern improved its record to 13-11, 7-3, while Portland State dropped to 8-15, 2-8.

“They shot really well and we didn’t have a great shooting night,” junior guard Jeb Ivey said.

In the first half, Eastern Washington set the tone offensively by shooting an exceptional 65.2 percent from the field. Chris Hester provided an aggressive spark in the first half receiving two lobs for dunks inside. The Eagles also hit 4-8 from three-point territory to keep a balanced inside-outside attack, challenging the Vikings’ defense. Portland State shot 44.8 percent from the field in the first, including 3-7 from three-point range. The Vikings went into the locker room trailing a red-hot Eagles squad 43-33.

In the second half, the Vikings intensified their defensive pressure, taking two leads after erasing the 10-point deficit. However, the Eagles didn’t cool off too much in the locker room, still shooting at 52.2 percent for the second half. Portland State was able to improve its shooting to 48.1 percent in the second half, but shot only 1-8 from behind the arc.

Seamus Boxley provided a great lift off the Viking bench, shooting 10-12 from the floor for 22 points and grabbing nine boards in 30 minutes of play. Ivey hit three of his six three pointers, scored 13 points on 5-12 shooting and dished out seven assists.

“Seamus played well, but it’s hard to just have one weapon and not balance with an inside, outside attack on offense,” Ivey said.

All-conference forward Anthony Lackey was forced to sit big minutes because of foul trouble.

Three players scored in double figures for the Eagles. Guard Chris Hester led the way with 20 points on 7-10 shooting. Alvin Snow had 15 points and Marc Axton added 12. The Eagles were able to win the battle on the glass 30-25 and narrowly win the margin of assists, 19-18.

Portland State will host Weber State this Friday in the Stott Center at 7:05 p.m.