KEARNEY, Neb. - The No. 23 Rogers State men's basketball team defeated Nebraska-Kearney 78-66 at Buckle Court in the Health & Sports Center on Saturday.
Rogers State (22-5, 14-4 MIAA) picked up their sixth straight road victory as Marques Sumner scored 20+ points for the third-consecutive game.
How it Happened: The Hillcats took the lead after the Lopers (15-11, 9-8 MIAA) scored the first basket of the game. However, the Lopers would keep the game close earlier as they did not allow the Hillcats to form a double-digit through the first nine minutes of the game.
The Hillcats found their rhythm midway through the half as they went on a 24-4 run going into halftime. The Hillcats had a 24-point lead over the Lopers of 40-16 going into the break.
In the beginning, of the second half the Hillcats extend their lead to 30 points. Even with the large lead, the Lopers would fight back to make the Hillcat lead as small as four points in the final five minutes of the game due to 29-9 run from the hosts.
The Navy and Red did not allow the Lopers to come any closer in the game as they extended their lead back to double-digits to seal the win.
Key Players: Sumner would lead the team in scoring with 21 points. Sumner also tallied three rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Sumner went a perfect 8-8 in free throw shots for the Hillcats as well.
Tavian Davis scored 13 points for the Hillcats. Davis had six assists, three rebounds and a steal as well.
Jett Sternberger put up 12 points in the game. He also recorded four rebounds and was a perfect 5-5 from the line.
Brewster Peacock would be the final Hillcat in double-figures for scoring with 11 points. Peacock had four rebounds and an assist as well.
Key Statistics: The Hillcats would shoot 51 percent from the field while the Lopers only shot 40 percent from the field.
The Hillcats outscored the Lopers in the paint, as the Navy and Red put up 36 points while the Lopers only put up 18.
Notes: Davis set a season record for assists with his six assists tonight. Davis only needed three to get the record.
Gabriel Ferreira surpassed 300 career points as he scored six points against the Lopers.
What It Means: With the victory, Rogers State moves closer to securing the No. 2 seed in the MIAA Tournament. Rogers State will earn the No. 2 seed with a win at Emporia State next Saturday or a loss from Missouri Western (16-12, 12-5 MIAA) on Thursday vs No. 1 seed Northwest Missouri or Saturday vs current No. 5 seed Washburn.
Up Next: Rogers State will have a week off before returning to action next Saturday when the Hillcats travel to Emporia, Kansas for the regular-season finale. The Hillcats will take on Emporia State with a tip off set for 1:30 p.m. against the Hornets at the William L. White Auditorium.