KANSAS CITY, Mo. —- Minnesota State concluded its Kansas City trip with another win Saturday evening as the Mavericks bested Arkansas-Monticello 69-57.
With the win, MSU improves to 2-0 on the season. With the loss, UAM drops to 2-0 on the season.
“It’s nice to get out of KC tonight 2-0,” head coach Matt Margenthaler said. “We didn’t play our best basketball tonight but we have learned that when we are all connected we are really good, and when we deviate from what we’re doing, we’re average at best. This was a great leaning experience for us.”
MSU led from the start of the first half as the Mavericks jumped out to an early 11-3 lead that saw Elijah Hazekamp, Justin Eagins and Kyreese Willingham each notch and three pointer. The Mavericks would hold their lead as a layup from Malcolm Jones with 9:38 to go in the half put MSU by 10 at 20-10.
The Boll Weevils would cut into MSU’s lead and get back to within four points of the Mavericks at 29-25 after putting together a 15-9 run over eight minutes. A three pointer from Kyreese Willingham and a layup from UAM’s Cole Anderson would bring the halftime score to 32-27 in favor of MSU.
Kyreese Willingham led the Mavericks in the first half with eight points, while Hazekamp notched seven points and five rebounds. As a team, MSU shot 40% from the field in the first half.
Isaac Jackson led the Boll Weevils in the first half with 11 points, while Josh Denton notched eight points. As a team, UAM shot 40% from the field in the first half as well.
Scoring was at a premium early on in the second half as the Mavericks led by eight at 37-29 with 14:46 to go. The Boll Weevils managed to put together a 12-5 run to pull within one of the Mavericks at 42-41, but four straight points from the Mavericks put MSU back up by five at 46-41 with 9:56 to go.
The Boll Weevils managed to get back within three of the Mavericks at 50-47 with 7:16 to go but they would get no closer as MSU would outscore UAM 19-10 down the stretch to secure the 69-57 win.
Malik Willingham led al scorers with 18 points and eight assists, while both Hazekamp and Dylan Peters each notched 14 points. Hazekamp hauled in a team-best eight rebounds as well.
As a team, MSU shot 46.7% (21-for-45) from the field. The Mavericks also cashed in on 21-of-28 (.750) attempts from the free throw line. MSU hauled in 31 rebounds and passed out 12 assists.
Jackson led UAM with 17 points, while Denton added 11 points and a team-leading eight rebounds. As a team, the Boll Weevils shot 40.7% (22-of-54) from the field.
Minnesota State continues its season on Saturday, Nov. 18, as it takes on St. Cloud State in a nonconference on the road. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00 pm, at Halenbeck Hall.