INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The Omaha men's basketball team battled past IUPUI Wednesday evening, defeating the Jaguars 79-71 at Indiana Farmers Coliseum. With the win, the Mavericks improve to 9-9 (2-3 Summit League) on the season, while IUPUI drops to 7-11 (1-3).
Sophomore guard Zach Jackson scored a team-leading 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting with a trio of 3-pointers, adding four rebounds and two steals. Junior forward Tre'Shawn Thurman just missed a double-double, finishing with 16 points, nine rebounds and a block.
Junior forward Mitch Hahn chipped in 15 points with three more 3-pointers, four rebounds and three blocks. Senior guard Marcus Tyus rounded out the double-figure scoring with 13 points alongside seven caroms, a career-high five steals, three assists and a block.
Sophomore center Zach Pirog also had a career-high four blocks for the night.
As a team, Omaha shot .469 (30-of-64) from the floor, .333 (7-of-21) from 3-point range and .667 (12-of-18) at the free throw line. IUPUI finished at .408 (29-of-71) from the field, .263 (5-of-19) from distance and .571 (8-of-14) at the stripe. IUPUI outboarded the Mavericks 44-40, but Omaha forced 17 Jaguar turnovers and had the edge in assists (13-12), steals (10-7) and blocks (10-4).
IUPUI got a double-double from Evan Hall, who totaled 21 points and 11 rebounds with three blocks. Darell Combs (13), Matt O'Leary (11), Kellon Thomas (10) and Ron Patterson (10) also had double-figure scoring performances for the Jaguars.
Jackson paced the Mavericks in the opening 20 minutes, shooting a perfect 6-for-6 for 16 points. As a team, the Mavericks hit 17-of-33 (.515) from the floor, using a series of runs to keep pace against IUPUI. Omaha led by as many as seven in the first half, but the Jaguars cut it to 27-26 with a Combs layup at 4:05. Omaha, however, outscored IUPUI 13-6 over the last four minutes to lead 40-32 at the break.
In the second half, the Mavericks pushed their lead to double digits at 42-32 with a Pirog dunk at 17:51, but IUPUI rallied to take the lead at 48-47 four minutes later on a Patterson 3-pointer. With 7:31 remaining, Hahn hit a three of his own to even the game at 59-59, and Jackson followed with another triple at 7:08 to put the Mavericks ahead for good. After the under-four media timeout, IUPUI managed to pull within three when a Combs trey made it 69-66, but the Mavericks held on to claim the win, 79-71.
Omaha returns to action on Saturday, Jan. 14, hosting Western Illinois. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at Baxter Arena, and Gary Sharp and John Karhoff will have the radio call on 1620 The Zone. Links to live stats, audio and video are available on OMavs.com.