KEARNEY – The Nebraska-Kearney women’s basketball team made 11 three pointers, had 26 assists and 23 steals in a 103-33 win over Manhattan Christian (Kan.) College Wednesday night at the Health & Sports Center.
The Lopers improve to 5-2 while the Thunder, from Manhattan, Kan., remain 2-1 as this was an exhibition game per NCCAA (National Christian College Athletic Association) rules.
UNK led 25-5 after the first quarter and 50-8 at the break. The Lopers almost shut out MCC in the second quarter but the Thunder sunk a three with 26 seconds left in the half.
All 12 healthy Lopers scored with the Blue & Gold cracking the schools’ all-time time 10 in a variety of categories; assists, steals, field goals made (42), three point attempts (29), margin of victory (70), fewest points allowed and points scored. This marks just the 23rd 100-point game in Kearney history, which dates back to 1969 (modern era).
“It’s never too easy … there’s always a standard. There’s things we want to make sure we do every time out, whether we’re in a practice or a game,” said Loper head coach Carrie Eighmey. “Tonight we were able to create a lot of easy transition buckets because of our defense. We got into passing lanes and got deflections which is something that we continue to get better at every week.”
UNK outscored MCC’s bench 59-0, had all 25 second chance points in the game and had a 54-10 margin in points in the paint. Shooting 58% from the field (42 of 72), the Lopers also were plus 26 on the glass and held the Thunder to 31% (13 of 42) shooting. Finally, Manhattan Christian had 33 turnovers, many leading to fast break layups for the Lopers.
“When they went zone in the second half we were able to hit some threes and that’s what you have to do against any zone. You have to hit some perimeter shots,” said Eighmey.
Individually, freshman reserve forward Elisa Backes (Salina, Kan.) went 8 of 9 from the field (2 of 2 threes) to tally a game-high. Her other double digit effort to date came in the win over Bethel College (17). Backes also had a team high seven rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Next, starting wing Maegan Holt (Council Bluffs, Ia.) had 16 points on 5 of 8 (2 of 5) field goal shooting with fellow freshman Aspen Jansa (Bishop Neumann H.S.) at 13 points, six dimes and six boards. Finally, reserve post Brooke Carlson (Elkhorn South) had seven points, four assists, two blocks and two rebounds in 18 minutes of work
“This was an opportunity to get more experience in a game situation for a youthful team. We were able to work on several things that should help us down the road,” said Eighmey.
MCC saw starter Maisie Schroeder hit four threes to tally a team-high 17.
The competition jumps up a notch next week when the Lopers travel to No. 10 Fort Hays State (Tuesday) and host No. 25 Emporia State (Thursday).