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Kearney, Neb. – Freshman forward Elisa Backes had a double double as Nebraska-Kearney scored the first 14 points to thrash Bethel College, 91-46, Monday evening at the Health & Sports Center.
The Lopers (2-2) get back to the .500 mark while the NAIA Threshers, from North Newton, Kan., remain 7-0 as this was an exhibition game per NAIA rules.
UNK saw all 12 available players get into the scoring column with 11 grabbing at least one rebound. The Lopers led 14-0 at the 6:15 mark of the first quarter as Bethel struggled early and often from the field. They finished 3 of 12 (0 of 5 threes) to trail 27-10. Overall, the Threshers shot 28 percent (14 of 50).
A 6-1 forward from Salina, Kan., Backes had team-highs in points (17) and rebounds (10). Seven of her caroms came at the offensive end and she ended 5 of 9 from the field and 6 of 8 from the line.
Next, reserve forward Maegan Holt (Council Bluffs, Ia.) got close to a double double as well as she had 14 points and eight rebounds (four offensive) off the bench. As a team, UNK out rebounded Bethel 50-35 and managed 26 second chance points.
The Lopers were also good in the perimeter, sinking seven triples. Holt hit two of them with five others having one apiece. That big group included junior reserve Lauren O’Connell (League City, Texas). Finally, Kearney tallied 39 points off of 26 BC turnovers and got a healthy 58 points off its bench. No Loper logged more than 24 minutes with 11 playing at least 10.
Guard Bryanna Taylor placed the Threshers with 10 points and three bounds. UNK hosts a “Crossover Classic” this Saturday and Sunday. The Fort Hays State Tigers, Chadron State Eagles and Colorado-Colorado Springs Mountain Lions are the visitors. The Lopers face Chadron Saturday (7 p.m.) and UCCS (4 p.m.) on Sunday.