Dec. 19, 2008
Bearcats Head South For Weekend Games
MARYVILLE, Mo.-One day after earning a 15-point win against William Woods, the Northwest Missouri State men's basketball team boarded a bus and headed for San Antonio, Texas, to compete in this weekend's River City Classic hosted by St. Mary's University. The Bearcats (4-4) take on Midwestern State (4-4) at 12:45 p.m. Saturday and Eastern New Mexico (2-7) at 10:30 a.m. Sunday.
Northwest will compete in San Antonio for the fourth year in a row. The Bearcats are 6-1 in that span with its only loss coming in 2006 to before-mentioned Midwestern State. Chad Rickett hit a 15-footer with 1.4 seconds left to give the Mustangs a 72-70 win.
The Bearcats had won the previous five meetings with Midwestern State and are 2-0 all-time against Eastern New Mexico. The teams last met in the first round of the NCAA tournament back in 2004. Northwest won 77-57 and would go on to win the regional three days later to reach the Elite Eight.
The Mustangs and Greyhounds are the final non-conference games on the Bearcats' regular season slate, but as members of the Lone Star Conference, both games are in-region, meaning each will have playoff implications.
Midwestern State was 13-13 a year ago and has gotten off to a similar start as the Bearcats. All four Mustang wins have come at home, but the team is 0-3 in games outside of Wichita Falls, Texas, this season.
Senior guard Nolan Richardson leads the Mustangs with 16 points per game. He's coming off a career-high, 34-point performance (14-of-16 FT) in a 70-67 overtime win against Texas A&M-Commerce Wednesday.
Eastern New Mexico is coming off a 6-21 campaign and has yet to win outside of Portales this season. Junior forward Equs Darby is averaging 9.8 points and five rebounds. Junior guard Kelvin Franklin has made one start, but leads the Greyhounds with 10.7 points per game.
Northwest's lone senior, Hunter Henry, leads the Bearcats with 16.6 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. He has four double-doubles in his last seven games, including a 23-point, 13-rebound performance against William Woods Wednesday.
Northwest Head Coach Steve Tappmeyer has juggled five starting lineups in eight games. Henry and forward Shawn Carter have started every game this season.
Sophomore forward Elijah Allen earned his first career start Wednesday and finished with 11 points and a career-best eight boards. Allen is averaging 14 points and 5.7 rebounds in three home games, but his averages fall to 3.8 and 3.2 away from Bearcat Arena.
Junior guard Mike Larsen had seven assists and zero turnovers in Wednesday's win. Larsen's the only Bearcat with an assist and a steal in all eight games this season. The Bearcats had a season-high 25 assists Wednesday and a season-low six turnovers.
For more information, please contact:
Phillip Dowden, Media Relations/Sports Information
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