March 1, 2007
Bearcats Move Past 1st Round Against Missouri Southern 89-56
KANSAS CITY - ( stats) Northwest Missouri State men's basketball, the No. 1 seed in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA), used a 36-of-41 free throw shooting display in taking down No. 8 seed Missouri Southern 89-56 this afternoon in first-round action. The 36 made free throws set a Tournament record as the Bearcats held a +23 scoring edge from the charity stripe.
The Bearcats will take on No. 5-seed Pittsburg State at 12 p.m. on Saturday in the semifinal round. Northwest is 1-1 against PSU this season.
"I think our execution was sharp and we played well with the lead," said head coach Steve Tappmeyer. "It is a dangerous feeling to have a double-digit lead at the half but I think we kept up our intensity. I was pleased with how many players contributed."
Falling behind early at 11-7, Northwest creeped back with good free throw shooting and solid defense. Four straight charities by senior Reggie Robinson notched the count at 11-11 at the 13:31 mark. After a MSSU basket, Robinson sparked a 15-4 run on two more freebies. A fast-break dunk by senior Victor James capped the scoring run and Northwest led 26-17 under the five-minute mark.
Missouri Southern did not score over a five-minute stretch falling behind 18-13. The Lions got to within one at 18-17 but saw the Northwest lead expand in the half's final seven minutes.
A trey by freshman Mike Larsen under a minute remaining, one of two for Larsen in the half, put the Bearcats up by their largest first-half margin, 39-22. A runner by MSSU's Trevor Logan put the score at 39-24 in favor of Northwest at intermission.
The Bearcats poured on the scoring after the break putting in 20 of the half's first 23 points. During that time, MSSU coach Robert Corn was ejected and Northwest seemingly crushed all hope of an upset with good shooting.
The bench cleared in the final five minutes for the Bearcats with subs Clint McFall and Larsen having notable efforts. McFall made both attempts behind the arc while Larsen notched nine points with a 3-of-3 long-range effort.
Northwest had 35 bench points compared to MSSU's 15.
MIAA Most Valuable Player Hunter Henry led all players with 20 points on 14-of-14 free throw shooting. His FT performance tied a Tournament accuracy record (1.000) and his 14 made tied for fifth in Northwest single-game records. Robinson collected 15 points and a team-high five assists and junior Andy Peterson had 14 on 5-of-5 shooting.
MSSU was led by 18 points from Stanley Titsworth, 15 coming after the break. TJ Britton corralled a game-high 13 rebounds to along with eight points.
Northwest shot 51 percent from the floor, the eighth time over 50 percent this year. MSSU was held to 33 percent including 24 percent behind the circle. The Bearcats finished at 88 percent (36-of-41) from the free throw stripe and forced 15 turnovers.
Northwest vs. Missouri Southern - March 1, 2007 (1st round)
Northwest Team Tournament Notes:
• …Northwest improves to 22-20 overall; 11-7 in 1st-round games
• …playing in 24th Tournament; 16th straight
• …ranked No. 2 in the South Central Region (Feb. 28) - behind Central Missouri
• …is 20-13 under coach Tappmeyer; 10-6 in 1st-round games
• …is 1-2 as the No. 1 seed; losing 1st-round games back in 1996 and 1987
• …is 6-3 at Municipal Auditorium.
• …is 3-1 against Missouri Southern.
• …is 10-3 when scoring 80+ points.
• …is 16-0 this season when leading at the half; won last 20 such games.
• …set Tournament record with 36 FT's made
• …margin of victory (33) is 2nd largest in NW history (49)
• …has now won 9 of last 10 opening-round games.
• …gone 14 straight games with even or fewer turnovers than opposition
• …hit for eighth game over 50 percent shooting.
• …has won last 12 games when scoring 80+ points.
• …averaged 9.0 turnovers in last seven games.
Northwest Individual Tournament Notes:
• Hunter Henry …
o Stretched 10+ scoring streak to 24 straight games.
o 11th game with 20+ points; 4th in last 5 games.
o Tied career-high with 4 blocks.
o Tied MIAA & Northwest Tournament record for accuracy with 14-of-14 FT's
o Tied for 5th at Northwest with 14 FT's made; 6th with 14 FT attempts
• Victor James …
o 8 points scored is most since 8 against Emporia State, Jan. 24, 2007
• Andy Peterson …
o 14th game over 10 points; 5th straight
• Reggie Robinson …
o 2nd time this season, he has gone back-to-back 10+ point games
o 15 points is most since 16 against Truman State, Jan. 17, 2007
o 11-of-13 FTs is a career-high
• Matt Withers …
o 1st scoreless game since Nov. 21, 2006 - a streak of 25 games.
For more information, please contact:
Phillip Dowden, Media Relations/Sports Information
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