CHARLESTON, Illinois — Burak Eslik scored 29 points and made all 12 of his free throws to lead Southern Illinois-Edwardsville over Eastern Illinois 72-64 on Saturday night to end a six-game skid.
Grant Fiorentinos scored 14 points and Michael Chandler blocked three shots for the Cougars (5-20, 2-11 Ohio Valley Conference), who outrebounded the Panthers 46-25 and shot 41.5 percent from the field.
Trailing by 10 at halftime, Luke Piotrowski hit a free throw to pull the Panthers within a point, 34-33, early in the second half, but the Cougars replied with an 11-2 run capped by Eslik's back-to-back 3s for a 45-35 lead.
Cornell Johnston's free throw pulled the Panthers within 61-57 with 1:22 left, but Eslik made a layup and sank eight free throws down the stretch to help seal the win.
Trae Anderson scored 29 points on 10-of-21 shooting for Eastern Illinois (11-15, 7-6).