Fort Hays State, ranked No. 20 in NCAA Division II, moved to 7-0 overall on the season with a 95-64 win over Sterling College on Saturday (Nov. 30) in Hays. The Tigers jumped out to a 33-point halftime lead and then cruised from that point.
FHSU opened the game on a 16-0 run before Sterling scored its first basket at the 15:20 mark. FHSU then used a 9-0 burst to lead by 23 at 25-2. The Tigers shot the ball very efficiently in the first half, hitting 65.6 percent (21-of-32) from the field and 5-of-7 beyond the 3-point line. They were perfect at the charity stripe in the first half at 11-of-11 to lead 58-25.
The Tigers pushed the lead to 41, the largest of the game, with 3:54 to go in the game. With the majority of the starters getting to rest in the second half, FHSU finished the game at 57.6 percent from the field (34-of-59) and 50 percent beyond the 3-point line (7-of-14). The Tigers finished 20-of-23 from the free-throw line for 87 percent.
Fort Hays State had five players reach double figures. Craig Nicholson led the way with 17 points and nearly had a double-double with a team-high nine assists. Achoki Moikobu scored a career high as a Tiger with 16 points, followed by James Fleming with 15. Dwayne Brunson had a streak of five straight games with a double-double snapped as he scored 14 points but had just three rebounds. Andrew Victoria almost logged a double-double with 10 points and a team-high nine rebounds.
The Tigers received 47 points from their bench in the game and turned the ball over just five times.
Fort Hays State now braces for MIAA play with two difficult road games right out of the gate. FHSU plays at Central Missouri on Thursday (Dec. 5) and then Missouri Western on Saturday (Dec. 7). Fort Hays State's next home game is December 14 against Central Christian College.
Fort Hays State closed out its four-game homestand by taking down Tabor College, 86-51, on Saturday afternoon inside Gross Memorial Coliseum.
FHSU moves to 5-0 on the season and has outscored opponents by an average of 41.2 points during the first month of the season.
Against Tabor College (3-6), the Tigers shot 50.7 percent from the field (38-of-75) and hit on six of 10 free throws. On the defensive end, FHSU's 18 steals limited the Bluejays' offensive opportunities.
Kate Lehman put together her second consecutive double-double in points and rebounds, leading the team with 22 tallies and 11 boards. Lehman added four blocks on the defensive end.
Katelyn Edwards' streak of four straight double-doubles was snapped, but the senior still managed to knock down seven field goals and finish with 15 points. Her six rebounds were second on the team.
Chelsea Mason and Tera Ingalsbe once again hit double-digits in points, finishing with 11 a piece in the winning effort. Mason added five rebounds and a team-high five assists, while Ingalsbe had two blocks.
Beth Bohuslavsky neared a double-double, notching seven points, seven assists and three steals.
After falling behind 6-2 in the opening two minutes of the game, FHSU and TC hung close until 11:05, when an Edwards' free throw sparked a 23-0 run for the Tigers that lasted just under eight minutes and propelled the Tigers ahead, 42-15. Bohuslavsky would lead the Tigers during the run, scoring all of her seven total points.
BC closed the first stanza with seven unanswered to put the halftime deficit at 20, 42-22.
Out of the break, the teams would battle near the 20-point margin for the first 10 minutes of second half action as the lead ranged from 18 to 27 until 09:43, when FHSU went on a tear of 11 unanswered over a three minute period to jump ahead, 77-41.
Ingalsbe had a layup to start the run and Lehman contributed five of her 22 total points during that span.
The Tigers start MIAA play next Thursday (Dec. 5) on the road against No. 5 Central Missouri in Warrensburg, Mo., at 5:30 p.m. The road trip concludes on Saturday, Dec. 7 at Missouri Western.