FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Jalon Pipkins scored 19 points and Bobby Planutis pitched in 16 as the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons topped Cleveland State 75-68 at the Gates Sports Center on Friday (Feb. 19) evening.
Pipkins scored 13 of his 19 points in the second half. He had three key baskets down the stretch. First it was a 3-pointer at 2:57 putting the ‘Dons up 64-59. Cleveland State answered with a three of their own and then Pipkins responded right back with another three to push the lead back to five points. After Cleveland State cut it to a one possession game the ‘Dons had the ball with a minute left. Pipkins drove to his left and went hard to the basket near the baseline. He finished easily at the hoop thanks to a nice wall off of a defender by Cameron Benford. It was a free throw shooting contest the rest of the way.
In the first half, the Mastodons led by as many as 10 points thanks to a 20-4 run. Purdue Fort Wayne did serious damage inside the arc, finishing 13-of-15 in the half on two-point shots.
Cleveland State grabbed a quick lead in the second half only to see the ‘Dons use an 11-0 spurt to go up 49-44 with 11:34 left. Ra Kpedi helped extend it to a 15-2 run minutes later.
Kpedi had one of his best games as a Mastodon. The Vermont transfer finished with nine points and a game-high seven rebounds in 19 minutes. Demetric Horton had eight points off the bench.
Pipkins finished 7-of-9 from the floor. Planutis did his damage at the line, going 7-of-7 from the charity stripe.
The ‘Dons shot 56.3 percent (27-of-48) while limiting Cleveland State to 38.7 percent (24-of-62).
Purdue Fort Wayne improves to 7-13 (6-13 Horizon). Cleveland State falls to 15-7 (15-4 Horizon). The ‘Dons and Vikings will play again on Saturday in a 5 p.m. start. The game has been moved from ESPN+ to ESPN3. It will be the regular season finale for both clubs.