WEST PLAINS, Mo. – Add another mark to the win column for the Missouri State University-West Plains Grizzly Basketball team.
The Grizzlies defeated Central Methodist University’s junior varsity squad from Fayette, Mo., 79-47 Monday night, Feb. 4, at the West Plains Civic Center. The victory ups the Grizzlies’ overall season record to 17-9.
“I was actually pretty proud of how our team handled this game,” Grizzly Basketball Head Coach Yancey Walker said. “Central Methodist beat a two-year school earlier in the year, and they played a couple of varsity guys last night, so this game had a chance for disaster.”
The Grizzlies took control of the game early, going up 32-16 by halftime, and they maintained their advantage in the second half.
“These games aren’t easy to prepare for or attain the focus needed, but we did a pretty decent job,” Walker said. “We gave up too many back-door cuts, but our big guys did a good job of contesting all of their shots in the paint.”
Game statistics show the Grizzlies connected on 30 of 50 shots from the field for 60 percent, five of 10 3-point attempts for 50 percent and 14 of 27 free throws for 51.9 percent. They also collected 39 rebounds, 16 assists, five blocks and six steals while coughing up the ball 13 times.
Leading scorers were freshman forward Malcolm Henderson with 18 points, followed by freshman guards Devaugntah Williams with 17 points and Arroyo Edwards with 11. Henderson also had seven rebounds.
“We played a lot better offensively in the second half and shared the ball much better as the game wore on,” the coach said, noting the team’s 12 assists in the second half. “We still need to concentrate on getting better each day.”
Central Methodist hit 16 of 49 shots from the field for 32.7 percent, three of 14 3-point attempts for 21.4 percent and 12 of 14 free throws for 85.7 percent. The team collected 17 rebounds, five assists and six steals while committing 11 turnovers. Leading scorer was Patrick Posten with 9 points.
The Grizzlies return to the road Thursday night, Feb. 7, for a 7:30 p.m. contest against Northeast Mississippi Community College in Booneville. Their next Region 16 contest will be 7:30 p.m. Feb. 13 against State Fair Community College in Sedalia, Mo.
For more information about the Grizzly Basketball program, visit the team’s website at http://wp.missouristate.edu/grizzly/bb.htm or call the Grizzly Basketball office at 417-255-7993.