Eastern Illinois was held to just 18 first-half points, but went on a 14-2 run after the break to lead 32-26. The Cardinals pulled in front once more with 8:31 to go, making it 38-34.
Dylan Chapman answered with a 3-pointer and the Panthers scored seven-straight to grab the lead for good. Eastern Illinois went 8 of 10 on free-throw shooting in the final five minutes despite ending the night at 57.1 percent.
Anderson finished with a double-double, grabbing 11 rebounds. Cornell Johnston had seven assists for the Panthers (3-5).