ST. LOUIS (AP) — Jordan Goodwin had 22 points, nine rebounds and six assists and Demarius Jacobs added 20 points as Saint Louis topped Valparaiso 81-70 on Saturday night.
Saint Louis led 44-33 at halftime but Valpo eventually closed the gap to one point after Javon Freeman-Liberty hit a 3-pointer and fast-break layup to draw within 66-65 with 6:52 remaining.
The Billikens began to pull away again three minutes later when Jacobs hit a pair of free throws, Goodwin added a putback layup and Fred Thatch added another pair of free throws for a 76-68 lead. After Valpo missed a jumper, a layup by Yuri Collins gave Saint Louis a 10-point cushion with 1:28 remaining.
Daniel Sackey scored a career-high 22 points for the Crusaders (1-1). Freeman-Liberty added 19 points. John Kiser had eight rebounds.
Saint Louis takes on Eastern Washington at home on Wednesday. Valparaiso plays Southern Illinois-Edwardsville on the road on Tuesday.