The Murray State Racers defeated the Belmont Bruins in a thrilling 83-82 victory at the CFSB Center in Murray, Kentucky. The Racers, who now have a 13-10 record, improved their standing in the Missouri Valley Conference to 8-5. With eight teams within one game of each other, the 2022-23 season is proving to be highly competitive.
Brian Moore Jr. was the standout player for the Racers, scoring a career-high 25 points on 10-of-14 from the field. He was supported by Kenny White Jr. with 14 points, and Rob Perry and DJ Burns with 13 and 12 points respectively. The game was decided by the Racers’ defense, who stopped the Bruins from scoring, and the crucial free throws, as the Racers held on to their one-point lead, despite missing 1-of-4 free throws in the final 22 seconds.
The first half of the game was particularly exciting, with both teams scoring at a high rate. The Racers scored their season-high 49 points against a Division-I opponent, while the Bruins scored 43 points. The two teams combined for 14-of-25 from the 3-point line, with Moore and White hitting their first seven shots of the game.
The 165 total points scored by the Racers and Bruins is the highest-scoring game in MVC play this season, one point better than the previous highest score of 164 points in Illinois State’s 87-77 win over the Bruins on December 4th. The Racers are 9-1 at home this season and 24-1 at the Bank in the last two seasons.
Moore and Jacobi Wood were close to notching a triple-double for the Racers. Moore had 25 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists, while Wood had 8 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists. Wood also recorded another steal in the game, bringing his total for the season to 37 in 23 games. Moore has been a great addition to the starting lineup, scoring 17 points per game and shooting 56% from the field and 63% from the 3-point line in the five games he has started.
The Racers allowed the Bruins to score nine 3-pointers in the first half, but improved in the second half, limiting the Bruins to only four. The 49 points in the first half is the Racers’ season-high against a Division-I opponent, surpassing their previous best of 41 points against Tulsa.
The Racers will hit the road this weekend to play against Indiana State in Terre Haute at 3 pm on Saturday.