ABILENE, Texas - High Sierra! Maykus' Career Day Leads War Hawks
McMurry University's women's basketball team used its final game of calendar year 2013 to get back on track, topping Oklahoma Panhandle State University, 67-53, in a Heartland Conference bout at Kimbrell Arena.
The win snapped a four-game skid by the War Hawks (2-8, 2-2 HC), while keeping the Aggies (0-12, 0-6 HC) winless.
McM actually trailed at the half, 30-27, but sophomore guard Sierra Maykus keyed the victory by scoring a career-high 21 points, thanks to a 5-of-12 shooting day from the floor. Maykus was 4-for-7 from beyond the arc and 7-for-12 from the free throw stripe. She also had eight rebounds in her 30 minutes of court time.
The War Hawks blitzed the Aggies in the second half of play, out-scoring the visitors 40-23 during the final stanza.
"I think they were ready to play and had a lot of excitement," McM head coach Veronica Snow said of her team's efforts. "It's just that time of year. We were really hungry for a win. I'm real proud of the girls and their efforts. We had different people step up at different times of the game.
In addition to Maykus' performance, senior guard Tory Salazar found herself in double digits with 16 points. Salazar hit 7-of-12 from the floor, as McM found help from all quarters to garner the win.
Senior Keshia Collins had her double-figure scoring streak snapped at eight games, but contributed a solid game of eight points, seven rebounds and two blocks. Sophomore forward Taylor Russell, the War Hawks' "enforcer" on the defensive end, had a team-high nine rebounds (eight defensive).
Sophomore post player Ana Dominguez was limited to four points and four rebounds, but had three blocked shots. Junior Tineka Lawson added five caroms.
McMurry took advantage of 26 OPSU turnovers, converting them into 25 of its points. McM also held a 14-9 margin in second-chance points.
Hannah Tatum came off the OPSU bench to tally 12 points in leading her club. OPSU's Sharice Papaleo led all rebounders with 11 boards.
McMurry will resume action on Saturday, January 4 (1 p.m.) - with its seventh-consecutive home game - when it welcomes St. Edward's University to Kimbrell Arena.
War Hawks Upend Aggies, 96-82
Five players scored in double figures as McMurry University raced past Oklahoma Panhandle State University 96-82Saturday afternoon in Heartland Conference action at Kimbrell Arena.
With the win the War Hawks improve to 2-0 in conference play and are in a four-way tie for first place.
McM scorched the nets in the first half and shot 61 percent (22-for-36) from the field, while holding OPSU (0-10, 0-2 HC) to 34 percent (11-for-32) from the floor. The War Hawks went into the break with a 52-37 advantage, however, the Aggies erased the War Hawks lead and fought back.
Zilijan Jones's bucket at 6:29 in the second stanza brought OPSU to within 74-70, but Brandon Golden quickly countered with a 3-pointer and McM finished the game on a 22-12 run to clinch the win.
"Offensively Brandon (Golden) has been huge for us on offense all year," McM head coach Clif Carroll said after the game. "That bucket was huge for us because it stopped their momentum and allowed us to regain control of the game."
Connor Robinson (Austin, Texas/Bowie HS) scored 18 points on 6-for-10 shooting from the field, and hauled in 13 rebounds to complete the double-double.
Alfred Perez (Spring, Texas/Klein Collins HS) recorded a team-high 20 points and grabbed six rebounds. Alex Lewis (Converse, Texas/Temple College) helped out with 16 points – and was 2-for-3 from behind the arc. Will Adams (Philadelphia, Pa./Baltimore CC) added 10 points and Golden (Austin,Texas/Coastal Bend College) dropped in 10 points.
As a team McM recorded 25 assists, compared to 10 for OPSU.
Jeremy Newton scored a game-high 26 points to lead the Aggies.
The War Hawks (6-4, 2-0 HC) return to action Jan. 1 and play host to Hillsdale Free Will Baptist College. Tip is set for 4 p.m.
Information provided by McMurry athletics department.
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