SPRINGFIELD– No matter which way you slice it, Senior Day is bittersweet. It’s the celebration of all the work an athlete put in during their time with a respective school and at the same time, it’s the realization that you’ll never be able to wear that jersey and play in front of the home crowd, ever again.

So that’s why you gotta send them off with a victory! Them being fifth year senior Sydney Wilson, who’s gone through three head coaches as a Lady Bear, and fifth year transfer senior, Aniya Thomas the team’s leading scorer.

Last two games ole Mo State’s been pretty slow out of the gate going 7-34 in the first quarter. Saturday, they made 10-16 shots including Wilson’s layup to build an 8-2 advantage.

But Indiana State didn’t suit up to celebrate. They came spoil the party. Bella Finnegan scored a team-high 19 points as her trey ball cut the Sycamores deficit to 3 in the opening period.

When you play in an arena nicknamed the “Vault” the bank’s always open. Two of Kennedy Taylor’s game-high 23 gave MSU a 23-18 edge entering the 2nd.

And in the 2nd, Paige Rocca scored 7 straight points. That triple rings the bell boosting the Lady Bears lead to 10.

Less than 4 minutes til intermission, Thomas from the corner. She scored 18 of her 20 points in the first half. Maroon and white ahead by 15.

Final seconds of the 1st half, Thomas with the pullup…just lethal. Lady Bears cruising with a 44-26 edge at the break.

Beth Cunningham’s crew scored 23 in the first, 21 in the 2nd, and 25 in the third to build a 23 point lead. First time all season the Lady Bears opened game scoring 20 or more points in 3 straight quarters.

The Sycamores didn’t give up, though. They cut the deficit to 10 with 4 minutes left in regulation. So it wasn’t over yet.

But Thomas’ lone bucket of the 2nd half restored the lead to a dozen and then it was over.

Missouri State wins 77-66 to sweep their season series with Indiana State and send off their seniors in style.