UMC scored over 100 points for the second time this season en route to their first win.
Alan Hodge, Jr. scored 23 points, Gable Smith tallied 11 rebounds and five blocks and the UMC Golden Eagles routed the Oak Hills Christian College Wolfpack 104-68 for their first win of the season.
The Golden Eagles came off a weekend in which they dropped two games by less than 10 points and responded by scoring 100 points for the second time this season.
UMC’s shooting did not come alive at the beginning of the game, but a pair of turnovers by the Wolfpack in the first two minutes helped the Golden Eagles jump out to an 8-2 lead capped off with a three by Chase Knickerbocker.
Oak Hills Christian responded with a 7-3 run when the Golden Eagles struggled to sink their jumpers.
“I thought early in the game, we weren’t getting reversals,” Head Coach Dan Weisse said. “We were just taking the first average look and we were casting away too much. We’ve got some guys that can make shots and make plays, but if we let the offense come to us, we’ll get a lot of good looks.”
Harrison Cleary made a two point jumper to put UMC ahead 19-14 and what followed was a surge to the rim by the Golden Eagles.
Cleary finished the game with 17 points on the night.
Once the points started coming from under the rim, the shooting flourished as well. UMC jumped out to a 42-24 lead at the end of the first half with the help from a pair of threes from Ben Juhl and Hodge, Jr.
“We came out a little slow and had a talk over halftime about coming out more aggressively, playing together and trusting each other and that’s exactly what we did,” Hodge, Jr. said. “We just built off the tough losses this past weekend.”
The aggressive and quick play of the Golden Eagles led to domination in the second half as UMC grabbed a 61-31 lead in just over the first five minutes of the half.
UMC did not take their foot off the gas and continued to make threes including back to back threes by Hodge, Jr. and Aaron Hollcraft for a 83-50 lead.
Hollcraft, from Crookston, contributed in the second half shooting 6 for 8 from the field for a career-high 13 points.
UM Crookston closed out the game 104-68 for their first win of the 2017-2018 season.
Despite the offensive onslaught, Weisse still sees room for improvement.
“I think we’ve got a chance to be pretty good with this team,“ Weisse said. “If we’re going to be pretty good, we’ve got to get stops. I don’t care who you’re playing against, you got to get more stops.”
Hodge, Jr. echoed Weisse’s sentiment.
“I’m pretty sure we can score 100 most of the time, but we’re more focused on defense,” Hodge Jr. said. “We’re trying to keep our opponents under a certain amount of points. Hundred points is nice, but getting a win will be better overall.”
UMC improved to 1-2 on the season and will next play the University of Sioux Falls on Saturday, November 18 at 3:30 p.m.