SIOUX CITY, IOWA – National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics’ No. 9-ranked Morningside College nearly managed to overcome a tough-luck offensive first half Wednesday, Jan. 27.
The Mustangs managed only 25 points over the first 20 minutes, hitting only 12-of-39 field goal attempts for an icy 30.8 percent, including not notching a three-point bucket. The visiting Jimmies of the University of Jamestown drained five in the period and left the Allee Gymnasium Court inside the Rosen-Verdoorn Sports Center with a 32-25 advantage.
Head coach Jim Sykes‘ squad came out of the lockerroom rolling, though. They scored 11 of the first 15 points to tie things up at 36-36. The back and forth ebb of the Great Plains Athletic Conference battle continued until UJ managed to put together a 10-2 stretch over the final 2:08 to salt away a 76-67 victory that concluded a rare season series sweep for the visitors.
The Gretna, Neb., senior combination of center Trey Brown (SR/Gretna, NE ) and guard Zach Imig (SR/Gretna, NE ), paced the Maroon throughout. They both returned to their double-double ways, with Brown having a monstrous 21-point, 18-rebound, one-blocked shot, three-steal, two-assist evening. Imig was just as sparkling, tallying 13 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists, and a steal. Freshman forward Ely Doble (FR/Gretna, NE), also a Gretna, Neb., native, joined his fellow southeastern Nebraska natives with a respectable nine points in nine minutes of action.
Mside, remaining atop the GPAC standings by a full game in the win column over second-place Dakota Wesleyan University, looks to turn around its fortunes Saturday, Jan. 30, at Mount Marty University. Game time is 4 p.m. inside MMU’s Laddie Cimpl Arena.
SIOUX CITY, IOWA – From the opening tip, Morningside College, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics’ No. 9-ranked program, was off and rolling Wednesday, Jan. 27.
The Mustangs got things going in a big way to start, opening up the ball game on a 14-0 run in the first three minutes to give the home side the only lead they would need. Head coach Jamie Sale‘s side got the roll going due to white-hot shooting by going 11-17 overall from the field and six for nine from three-point range in the opening 10 minutes.
From that point forward, a happy home crowd gathered inside Allee Gymnasium, and the Rosen-Verdoorn Sports Center had plenty to cheer about. The Maroon finished out the half by keeping the pedal to the metal by leading 51-26 at the break. It was more of the same in the second half as Morningside kept the pressure on with a 48-27 stretch that concluded a rousing 99-53 victory, the Great Plains Athletic Conference leaders’ 12th straight.
Sale’s squad was paced offensively by junior forward Sophia Peppers (JR/Exira, Iowa) (Exira, Iowa), who finished with a game-high 25 points and 11 rebounds for her third double-double of the season. Senior guard Sierra Mitchell (SR/Pleasant Hill, Iowa) (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) finished with 23 points on nine for 12 from the field and four for seven from beyond the arch. Mitchell pushed her career three-point field goals total to 379, one behind Madison Braun’s 380 for the school’s career record. With each member of the Maroon seeing playing time, freshman guard Lauren Hedlund (FR/Albion, Neb.) led the bench attack, turning in a career-best with six points towards the game’s closing minutes.
Scoring wasn’t the only area of dominance, either. Morningside put up their best single-game rebounding effort finishing with 51 boards and distributed the ball well by dishing out a season’s best 28 assists on 38 made field goals. The defense remained solid, too, by forcing 12 steals and 15 UJ turnovers.
The Mustangs, holding a four-game lead on the loop standings with an 18-2 overall and 16-1 league mark, take the conference’s best record on the road on Saturday, Jan. 30, to Yankton, South Dakota, for a date with the Mount Marty University Lancers. Game time is 2:00 p.m. from Laddie E. Cimpl Arena in Yankton.