MVC Basketball Teams Swept at Benedictine Saturday
MARSHALL, MO -- The Missouri Valley College men's and women's basketball went on the road Saturday for their first games in a week as they took on Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan. The Lady Vikings were taken down by the Lady Ravens 75-52, while the men's team was taken down as well, losing 75-54.
The Lady Vikings were able to get an early lead on No. 15 Benedictine as Freshman Guard Rayna Smith knocked down one of her three three-point field goals in the game to give MVC its first lead of the game at the 15:33 mark at 3-2. Benedictine responded though and went on a 22-3 run over the next six minutes to build up an 18-point advantage at 24-6. The Lady Viking struggled to hit shots in the first half, and Benedictine continued to add to the lead, eventually building a 30-point advantage late in the first half, before eventually going into halftime with a 43-18 as the Lady Vikings score seven of the final nine points in the first half. The Lady Vikings shot over 35-percent in the half, but were hampered by 18 turnovers.
Benedictine started quickly in the second half, pushing their lead to 31-points just minutes after halftime. The Lady Vikings responded and eventually whittled the Benedictine lead down to a 57-34 after another Smith three-point field goal at the 12-minute mark. That's as close as the Lady Vikings would get in the second half, as Benedictine was able to trade baskets with MVC down the stretch as the Lady Vikings fell to the Lady Ravens 75-52.
Leading the way for MVC was Smith. She was the only Viking in double-figures, finishing with 15 points and five rebounds. The HAAC's leading shot-blocker, Junior Forward Gabi Morales added four more blocked shots in the game, to go along with seven points and eight rebounds.
The loss drops the Lady Vikings to 6-18 overall and 3-9 in the HAAC. Benedictine improves to 21-3 overall and sits atop the conference with an 11-1 mark.
In the men's game, the Vikings came out and got on the board first as Senior James Pope scored to open the game and give MVC the early lead. Benedictine responded and went on a 8-2 run over the next three minutes to take the lead away from MVC and put the Vikings in an early six point deficit. The Vikings worked back into the game, after Junior Lawrence Brown and Sophomore Kevin Stander put together five points in less than 30-seconds to put the deficit to one with just under 15 minutes remaining in the half. The two teams traded baskets through the rest of the first half, with the Vikings taking the lead twice, but Benedictine grabbed the lead in the half for good with six minutes remaining and took a 33-26 lead into halftime.
To start the second half the Vikings got back to within five at 33-28 after aStander jumper at the 19:38 mark. The five point deficit was as close as the Vikings would get in the second half as Benedictine was able to build up a 15-point lead midway through the second half and not look back. Benedictine eventually came away with a 75-54 victory.
Leading the way for MVC was the HAAC's leading scorer, Epps, who had 16 points and four assists. Also in double-figures for the Vikings were Brown who had a double-double 11 points and 10 rebounds, and Senior Michael Connor who had 11 points on 3 of 6 shooting from the field. The Vikings forced Benedictine to turn the ball over 19 times and hauled in 11 steals. MVC was able to capitalize off of Benedictine's turnovers and score 22 points.
The loss drops MVC to 9-14 overall and 4-7 in HAAC play. Benedictine improves to 15-7 overall and 7-4 in the conference.
The MVC men's and women's basketball teams will play on the road Feb 7 when they travel to Springfield, Mo. to take on Evangel University. Women's game time is 5:30 p.m. and the men's game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
The MVC men's and women's basketball teams will next be in action Thursday Feb. 7 in Springfield against Evangel University. Women's game tips-off at 5:30 p.m. and the men's game is scheduled to get underway at 7:30 p.m. Earlier this season the Lady Vikings lost to Evangel 52-43, while the men's team was defeated 88-61. The Evangel men's team is currently ranked No. 21 in NAIA Division I basketball.