OMAHA, Neb. — A second-half surge powered the Omaha men’s basketball team past Purdue Fort Wayne on Senior Day Saturday afternoon, as the Mavericks topped third-place Purdue Fort Wayne 74-71 at Baxter Arena. With its fourth straight win, Omaha improved to 16-9 (10-2 Summit League) and remains within a half-game of the league lead, while the Mastodons saw their five-game win streak come to an end and drop to 17-11 (9-4).
Leaders for Omaha
Zach Jackson tallied his first double-double of the season with game highs of 27 points and 10 rebounds, shooting 10-of-18 from the floor, including 4-of-5 from deep. The senior had 24 points and six boards in the second half alone, including 16 points in a crucial six-minute stretch.
Matt Pile shot 7-of-10 en route to 14 points and seven rebounds, and Mitch Hahn and JT Gibson added 11 points apiece. Hahn also pulled down six boards, and Gibson chipped in three rebounds with two assists.
Leaders for Purdue Fort Wayne
John Konchar led the way for the Mastodons with 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting with six rebounds, five assists and two blocks. Matt Holba (17), Kason Harrell (12) and Dylan Carl (10) also finished in double figures.
Omaha shot .449 (31-of-69) from the field to Purdue Fort Wayne’s .456 (26-of-57). The Mavericks had the edge on the glass, 36-34, with 11 offensive rebounds spurring 17 second-chance points. For the night, they committed just seven turnovers, marking their fourth straight game with single-digit miscues.
Inside the First Half
Omaha shot .400 (14-of-35) in the opening 20 minutes, and Hahn led the Mavericks with 11 points. A back-and-forth half saw six ties and four lead changes, as the Mastodons broke through a 27-27 lock after the under-four timeout, and helped by a 9-0 run, held a 36-31 advantage at the break.
Inside the Second Half
Jackson turned it on in the second half, pouring in 24 points on 9-of-12 shooting. Purdue Fort Wayne had the lead until a Gibson three at 10:46 put the Mavericks in front 49-48, and a Wanjang Tut tip-in stretched it to 51-48. Jackson then caught fire, knocking down four straight treys in a span of 2:16, and another triple from Tut made it 66-55 with just under seven to play.
Another Jackson bucket stretched the lead to 13 before the Mastodons started a rally of their own, going on a 16-2 run to erase Omaha’s advantage and go up by one. But Pile answered immediately to put the Mavericks back on top, and after a Mastodon miss with 17 seconds left, a Gibson make on the fast break put it away.
Noting Today’s Game
–JT Gibson remains the only Maverick with at least one 3-pointer in all 25 games this season.
–Zach Jackson now has five double-doubles in his career.
–Mitch Hahn extended his double-digit scoring streak to 15 games, the longest of any Maverick this season.
-Omaha has won three straight in the all-time series with Purdue Fort Wayne.
Omaha welcomes Western Illinois for its final home game of the season on Wednesday, Feb. 20. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at Baxter Arena.
OMAHA, Neb. – Honoring seniors Ellie Brecht, Jay Bridgeman, Alicia Mountain, Kalen Phillips and Romekia Wallace prior to the game, the Omaha women’s basketball team sent their quintet out with a 70-61 win over Purdue Fort Wayne on Saturday at Baxter Arena.
Leaders for Omaha
Junior Rayanna Carter led three Mavericks in double figures with 19 points on 7-of-15 shooting with three rebounds. Sophomore Claire Killian finished with 15 points, including a 7-of-8 effort at the free throw line, four assists and a career-high six steals. Freshman Mariah Murdie added 11 points, a career-best 18 rebounds and five blocked shots.
Leaders for Fort Wayne
Hannah Albrecht scored a game-high 21 points on 8-of-14 shooting, including a trio of 3-pointers. Sh’Toya Sanders and De’Jour Young each had double-doubles in the loss. Sanders scored 10 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, while Young had 10 points and 10 boards. Kierstyn Repp also scored 10 points.
Omaha shot 39.7 percent (25-of-38) on the day from the floor, including a 30.8 percent (4-of-13) effort at the free throw line. The Mavericks hit 80.0 percent (20-of-25) at the free throw line. UNO held a 42-37 advantage on the boards.
Fort Wayne shot 35.4 percent (23-of-65) from the field and 30.0 percent (6-for-20) from long range. The Mastodons only shot 69.2 percent (9-for13) at the charity stripe.
Inside the First Half
It was a low scoring first quarter as Omaha and Fort Wayne were tied 5-5 with 3:34 left in the period. Sophomore Emily Petersen and freshman Josie Filer hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give the Mavericks an 11-7 advantage. Young’s layup at the buzzer cut Omaha’s lead to 13-11 after the opening 10 minutes.
Purdue Fort Wayne took the lead early in the second quarter on a 3-pointer by Repp. Omaha tied it at 16-all less than a minute later. Another Repp trey and five points by Albrecht gave the Mastodons their largest lead of the game, 24-18. Senior Kalen Phillips scored five straight points as the Mavericks regained the lead at 27-26. Another Young basket late in the period helped Purdue Fort Wayne take a 28-27 lead at halftime.
Inside the Second Half
Albrecht and Young continued to pace the Mastodons coming out of the break as the lead grew to 33-28 in the opening two minutes of the third quarter. Carter and Petersen hit back-to-back jumpers to cut the lead to 35-34. After a Young turnover, Carter scored in transition as Omaha went back on top 36-35. The Mavericks would not trail again. Omaha outscored Purdue Fort Wayne 12-6 to finish out the quarter and led 48-41 with 10 minutes left to play.
Albrecht scored seven straight points as the Mastodons cut the lead to 54-52 with 6:15 left in regulation. Carter, Killian and Murdie all scored as Omaha pushed its lead back to seven with under two minutes remaining. Purdue Fort Wayne got within five with 32 ticks left on the clock, but Killian hit six straight free throws to make the final 70-61.
Inside the Box Score
• The Mavericks improved to 8-18 overall and 2-11 in Summit League action, while the Mastodons are now 6-19 overall (2-11).
• Omaha snapped a four-game losing streak with Saturday’s win.
• Murdie set an Omaha NCAA Division I program record with 18 rebounds.
• Carter tied a career-high with 19 points and scored in double digits for the 15th time this season.
• Bridgeman entered the game with 13 seconds left in regulation for her first appearance of the season.
The Mavericks return to the hardwood on Saturday, Feb. 23 as Omaha faces North Dakota State in Fargo, N.D. at 1 p.m.