UMHB finishes 6-0 on road trip
Monday, 18 February 2013 by Tony Adams
ABILENE – The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor men's basketball team used clutch shots in the final seconds of the game to earn a 70-68 win over Hardin-Simmons and close its six-game road trip undefeated and run their current winning streak to nine games.
The first half proved an offensive struggle with several lead changes, before the Cru utilized a 9-0 run late in the half to gain a 36-30 halftime lead.
UMHB led by as many as nine in the second half, before the Cowboys rallied to even the score with just over five minutes left to play.
The game remained tied with just four seconds left on the clock when James Allen hit a jumper and secured the win for the Cru.
The Cru used another balanced scoring attack to defeat Hardin-Simmons, getting four double digits scoring performances. Kitrick Bell and Cory Meals each scored 14, Allen added 13 and Thomas Orr put up 12. Bell nearly had another double-double, as he led the Cru with nine rebounds. UMHB forced 12 turnovers and recorded seven steals in the game.
The Cru were lights out from the field, shooting 46.7 percent in the contest and equally brilliant from the free-throw line, converting at an 80 percent clip.
Hardin Simmons also had four players in double figures, led by Andy Spears 13 points.
Lauren Thomas, John Derr and Charles Sams all added 12 for the homestanding Cowboys.
Spears and Derr brought down nine rebounds each for Hardin Simmons. The Cowboys out-rebounded the Cru 42-37 and forced 10 turnovers. Hardin-Simmons shot 35.4 percent in the game and 64.7 percent from the free-throw line.
The win improves UMHB to 18-3 on the season and 14-1 in American Southwest Conference action.
They concluded road play with an impressive 9-1 conference mark, with the lone loss at East Texas Baptist in Marshall on January 3.
The Cru get a week off to rest up from the extended road trip. They have already clinched a playoff spot in the American Southwest Conference playoffs and should win the ASC West Division.
With four games to play, UMHB has a three and a half game lead on second place Hardin Simmons and Concordia, deadlocked with a 10-4 conference record.
UMHB will return to Mayborn Campus Center tonight as they open up the regular season ending home stand against Schreiner.