ST. LOUIS -- MiKyle McIntosh scored 15 points and No. 1 seed Illinois State never trailed in a 63-50 win over fourth-seeded Southern Illinois on Saturday to advance to the Missouri Valley Conference tournament final.
Paris Lee added 12 points, including 4-of-6 shooting from 3-point range, and Phil Fayne grabbed 11 rebounds for the Redbirds, who will play either second-seeded Wichita State or No. 6 seed Missouri State on Sunday for the championship.
Illinois State (27-5) rolled to a 43-20 halftime lead. A 3-pointer from Tony Wills early in the second half gave the Redbirds their largest advantage of the game, 52-22, before Southern Illinois used a 16-2 run to trim the gap back to 13 late in the game.
Sean Lloyd led Southern Illinois (17-16) with 12 points and Mike Rodriguez had 11.
The victory extended Illinois State's record for most wins in a season.