TORRINGTON, Wyo. – The Western Nebraska Community College men’s basketball team had a huge team effort, putting four players in double figures in picking up their 19th win of the season with a commanding 106-73 win over Eastern Wyoming College in a Region IX South sub-region contest Saturday.
The win keeps the Cougars on top of the South sub-region standings with a 9-1 mark, a half-game in front of Otero, who is 9-2 in conference play. WNCC is now 19-4 on the season as they head into a crucial road trip to Trinidad State Junior College and Laramie County Community College next weekend.
Saturday’s win, however, was something that pleased head coach Cory Fehringer as a big team win.
“We played better than we have been playing recently,” Fehrniger said. “We just talked about the strength of the whole is better than some of the parts and it shouldn’t matter to us who is on the floor because there is a specific way we expect to play.”
Saturday, it didn’t matter who was on the floor. The Cougars, after a back-and-forth 3-point shooting contest between the two teams, settled in and took control of the game.
EWC started the game holding an 8-7 lead on a Alek Cosic 3-pointer. That was when WNCC heated up, going on a 10-0 run behind 3-pointers by Vinnie Shahid and Jervay Green for a 17-8 lead. WNCC kept excelling with mini runs that helped open the lead. EWC had runs of their own, too, cutting the lead to 20-14 at one time and then 30-18. That was when WNCC opened the contest on back-to-back treys from Austin Hoffman and Martin Roub that sent the Cougars on another 10-0 run. WNCC went on to lead 55-33 at intermission.
The second half saw the lead stay around 20 points early going. WNCC started to widen the gap afte4r only leading 64-43 when they exploded on a 18-7 run that was highlighted by Trent Harris. Harris, during the run, sank three 3-pointers and scored 11 of his game-high 24 points for an 84-50 lead.
WNCC hit the century mark for the 12th time this season when Jervay Green had a driving bucket. WNCC continued scoring as Zane Bender had two buckets and Rashad Gillen had a bucket to close out the contest.
WNCC shot 53 percent for the field compared to just 30 percent for EWC. The Cougars nailed 16 3-pointers on the day. Harris had six followed by three from Shahid and two from Roub. Five other Cougars also nailed a trey.
The Lancers buried just five treys, which proved to be the difference in the contest. Cosic had two.
WNCC also had an abundance of scorers on the night, where 11 Cougars found the scoring column. Harris led the Cougar attack with 24 points Followed by Roub with 16 and Marlon Sierra with 15. Green finished with 11 points while also dishing off eight assists.
EWC was led by Jonathan Morrobel with 16 points followed by Rhythm Ajanku had 14 and Brandon Meadows had 12. Alek Cosic tallied 11.
WNCC will hit the road for four of its final regular season games beginning next weekend when they take on Trinidad State on Friday and Laramie County in Cheyenne on Saturday afternoon. Fehringer said they will need to be ready for the road contests.
“We will have to be tough on the road,” he said. “We have to play rebound and value the ball. They just have to be able to grasp the simple aspects, the simple stuff better. We try not to complicate the game.”
WNCC (19-4) 55 51 – 106
EWC (2-20) 33 40 – 73
Bryce Sanchious 8, Trent Harris 24, Vinie Shahid 9, Rashad Gillion 2, Marlon Sierra 5, Marko Rajanovic 3, Austin Hoffman 5, Jervay Green 11, Djordje Dimitrijevic 9, Zane Bender 4, Martin Roub 16.
Daniel Wright 3, Rhythm Ajanku 14, Nick Holmes 4, Trey Schroefel 2, Walker Korell 9, Brandon Meadows 12, Jonathan Morrobel 16, Alek Cosic 11, Chad Hinrichs 2.