SIOUX CITY, IOWA – Add another milestone marker reached for the tradition-rich Morningside College men’s basketball program.
In front of a happy home crowd inside Allee Gymnasium and the Rosen-Verdoorn Sports Center Wednesday, Feb. 5, head coach Jim Sykes‘ Mustangs hit the century mark for the second time in 2019-20, but more importantly, rebounded from their first loss of the campaign with a high-flying 102-77 triumph over Midland University that featured a pair of 50-point-plus halves. As the fans milled out of the Maroon’s home, word filtered out about National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics’ No. 10-ranked Dakota Wesleyan University being upended at home by a red-hot Briar Cliff University squad, locking up Mside’s league-record-setting third straight Great Plains Athletic Conference championship for the top-ranked D2 Mustangs which was also the program’s seventh overall.
A juggernaut 62-point bench performance, led by a single-game personal career-high from junior center Trey Brown (JR/Gretna, NE ) (Gretna, Neb.), powered Morningside to the conference-clinching victory. Sykes’ crew needed every bit of it early on as the Warriors opened the contest dropping in seven three-point buckets to keep neck-and-neck and even lead over the opening 20 minutes before the Mustangs managed to open a 51-42 halftime advantage. The second half was a different picture, as Mside was white-hot from the field overall, hitting 21 of 34 attempts for a stratospheric 61.8 percent clip which included going six of 11 from outside the arc compared to Midland converting at less than 35 percent overall and a tepid 23.5 percent rate from three-point range.
Brown finished with 32 points and 13 rebounds for his third double-double of the year. He didn’t stop there, though, as he also dished off four assists and blocked two Midland shot attempts. Senior forward Trystan Cummins (SR/Ankeny, IA ) (Ankeny, Iowa) added to the staggering bench number, canning three treys for nine points. Junior forward Zach Imig (JR/Gretna, NE ) (Gretna, Neb.) and senior guard Alex Borchers (SR/South Sioux City, NE ) (South Sioux City, Neb.) also found themselves in double figures with 13 and 11, respectively, as Imig was a rebound shy of a double-double and also dished off five assists.
Morningside (24-1, 16-1) takes to the road Saturday, Feb. 8, for a top-10 D2 clash with Dakota Wesleyan University. Game time at the World’s Only and Famous Corn Palace in Mitchell, S.D., is 6 p.m.
SIOUX CITY, IOWA – A difficult three-of-16 shooting performance in the opening frame was a harbinger of things to come for National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Division II No. 7-ranked Morningside College Wednesday, Feb. 5.
Try as they might, the Mustangs, looking to continue the momentum towards a strong regular-season-ending stretch run, never could find their groove during a 78-73 loss at the hands of Midland University. The Warriors scored the first nine points and managed to overcome a 42-34 run for the home-standing Mustangs over the second and third quarters with a nine-of-12 effort at the charity stripe in the last minute.
Sophomore forward Sophia Peppers (SO/Exira, IA) (Exira, Iowa) led the way for head coach Jamie Sale‘s squad with 23 points to go with four rebounds, four assists, a blocked shot, and a steal. Fellow sophomore forward Taylor Rodenburgh (SO/Hawarden, IA) (Hawarden, Iowa) turned in 14 points, nine rebounds and a steal and assist off the bench, and junior guard Sierra Mitchell (JR/Pleasant Hill, IA) (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) rounded out the double-figure scorers with 14 points.
Former GACC standout Lexis Haase had 19 points to lead the Warriors while former West Point-Beemer standout Amanda Hansen added 18.
Mside (19-7 overall, 13-5 Great Plains Athletic Conference) kept its hold on the league’s third-place slot due to Northwestern College upending Dordt University in Orange City. The Mustangs are back in action at the World’s Only and Famous Corn Palace in Mitchell, S.D., against Dakota Wesleyan University Saturday, Feb. 8. Game time is 4 p.m.