For UMKC, putting two halves of basketball together in the same game has been an elusive quest. On Saturday against the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks, it remained just that. During the first 20 minutes of the game, the Roos scored 41 points on 19-39 from the floor, were up by 11 at the break and were dominating in nearly every facet of the game.
Then came the second half.
The Mavericks didn’t grab their first lead until 10 minutes were left on the clock but they controlled things after the break outscoring the Roos 37-18 en route to the 67-59 final score. UMKC held a strong 38-30 advantage in the rebounding department and an even more impressive 16-7 gap on the offensive glass. However the Roos were done in by poor shooting, 7-24 (29.2%) and turnovers (12) in the final 20 minutes of action.
As far as individual performances goes, the star of the game for UMKC was without question Aussie center Brad Reid. He played in a season high 29 minutes and made the most of them. His 12 point, 13 rebound double-double was his first of the season. Prior to Saturday he had never finished a game with more than nine rebounds and cracked the ten point barrier only one other time in his college career – a 14 point effort against Oakland last February. Reid, like most of the Roos did the bulk of his damage in the first half. After the break he only scored two points and had as many fouls as rebounds (3). His single block came in the first half while his only two turnovers came in the second. Thomas Staton matched Reid with a dozen points on the night but they were the only two to score over ten. Estan Tyler continued to cool off from his hot stretch of games and finished with eight points, four steals, three assists and three turnovers. He was 4-12 from the floor and 0-5 from beyond the arc while the team as a whole was just 2-15. Fred Chatmon only played eight minutes.
Three point shooting didn’t doom the Roos however as UNO was just 3-12 from the perimeter themselves. Three pointers aside, the Mavericks were led by junior guard Justin Simmons who went for 21 points on 9-17 from the floor. He also filled up the box score with five rebounds, three steals, two assists and a blocked shot. John Karhoff, UNO’s senior center, added 16 points, four assists and three steals but only managed three rebounds in 36 minutes of play. Sophomore guard CJ Carter led UNO in rebounds with six while scoring 11 on 5-9 from the floor.
The Mavericks (7-16, 4-6) will host IPFW (10-13, 3-6) on Thursday. The Mastodons lost to UMKC by four a week ago and just lost to last place IUPUI in overtime this weekend.
UMKC (6-16, 3-6) appeared to have things going in the right direction but their recent home losses to UNO and their two point loss to an inferior Houston Baptist team have certainly thrown cold water on that belief. Now the uphill climb will get a whole lot steeper as they are set to play their next three games on the road. The first will be a Thursday evening matchup with the North Dakota State Bison (16-5, 7-2) that beat them by 19 at the start of the month.