PEORIA (HOI) -- Just a couple days ago Illinois State pulled off a big win over rival Bradley, but the momentum from Wednesday's game wouldn't carry over to Saturday as Illinois State (5-9, 2-6) fell to Valparaiso (4-9, 1-3) 69-60.
"There certainly is frustration with our inconsistent play and we didn't have great days of practice, we didn't do much. I was worried about our readiness to play the game and you could see in warmups we weren't really as excited to play as we were the other day," said Illinois State Head Coach Dan Muller.
It's a frustration also felt by the players, with the Redbirds continuing to start just about every game slow, falling behind before having to try to rally. ISU was down 13-points at halftime, but rallied in the second half to pull within five until the Crusaders put the game away.
"We gotta grow up. You have to be ready to compete and play together and once again we forgot those things, specifically in the first half," continued Muller.
Sophomore guard DJ Horne led ISU with 19 points (6-16 FG, 4-8 3PT) and 2 steals. Junior forward Dusan Mahorcic added in 15 points (6-10 FG), 5 rebounds, and 2 steals. Sophomore guard Antonio Reeves chipped in 10 points (4-9 FG, 1-3 3PT) and 6 rebounds.
With the momentum lost from the win over Bradley, the Redbirds will have to try and start a new on Sunday, trying to earn a series split with Valparaiso at 5 p.m. on the Marquee Sports Network.