Boyd scores 25 as UMKC holds off stubborn Chicago St. 87-82

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CHICAGO (AP) — LaVell Boyd hit five 3-pointers and made four big free throws in the final half-minute, scoring 25 points as UMKC held off a persistent Chicago State 87-82 on Saturday night, and will make the playoffs for the first time.

Kyle Steward added 13 points while Broderick Newbill and Broderick Robinson each had 11 as UMKC (16-15, 8-6 Western Athletic) posted a winning record in the regular season for the first time since the 2010-2011 season. The Kangaroos claimed the No. 3 seed to next week's WAC Tournament in Las Vegas because third-place Grand Canyon is transitioning from Division II and is ineligible.

Fred Sims Jr. poured in 31 points on 13-for-28 shooting as Chicago State (6-25, 1-13) battled to the wire trying to claim a second conference win.

UMKC's largest lead was nine points as Chicago State was able to stay within striking distance. Brian Greene Jr. slashed into the 72-63 lead with a 3-pointer, Sims hit two from the line and Trayvon Palmer scored on a putback to make it 74-70. The Cougars came as close as 83-80 on another Palmer putback with 17 seconds left.

Boyd and Steward closed it out at the line.

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