Arkansas State falls to Missouri State 80-71 in NIT Season Tip-Off

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Kyle Weems scored 18 points and Jermaine

Mallett added 17 as Missouri State beat Arkansas State 80-71 in the

first round of the NIT Season Tip-Off on Tuesday night.

The teams traded the lead 13 times and tied three times before

Mallett hit a jumper followed by a 3-pointer to launch an 8-2 run.

The Bears slowly pulled away and led by 24 points with 6:05 left.

That's when back-to-back 3-pointers by Daniel Bryant helped

launch a 20-0 Arkansas State run, and a dunk by Brandon Peterson

cut the margin to 71-65 with 3:04 left to play. But it was too

little too late.

Missouri State (2-0) hit 21 of 25 free throws. Will Creekmore

had 13 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Bears.

Bryant led the Red Wolves (0-2) with 20 points.