Missouri State Dominates William Woods

by Missouri State Athletics

Seven Missouri State players scored in double figures, and the Bears (6-7) set a school record with 17 3-pointers here Sunday, turning back visiting William Woods, 110-56, in MSU’s non-conference finale.

The Bears, who improved to 6-0 at home this season, got 16 points and a game-high eight rebounds from Szymon Wojcik, while Ross Owens scored a career-high 15 points.

Seven different players knocked down threes for the home side, led by Owens, Wojcik and Jarred Dixon with three apiece.

The Bears also set JQH Arena records for total points (110), 3-pointers (17), 3-point attempts (38) and total rebounds (56). MSU’s 3-point attempts also matched a school high-water mark for a game.

William Woods (6-5) was led by David Johnson’s game-high 19 points, while Aaron Brookins poured in 17 for the Owls.

Missouri State used a 19-0 run over a five-minute stretch in the first half to turn an 8-5 deficit into a 24-8 lead and never looked back. A steal and dunk by Keandre Cook made it 22-8 before Tulio Da Silva added a pair of free throws to put Missouri State ahead 24-8 with 11:43 left in the opening half.

Dixon’s trey with 5:43 left in the first period put the Bears up by 30 for the first time, while Da Silva’s bank shot with two minutes left in the period put MSU within one point of Indiana State’s arena record 60 points in a half.

The Bears hit 11 first-half 3-pointers to set a blistering pace and lead 59-25 at the intermission.

After surviving an onslaught of 13 points by Johnson in the first five minutes of the second half, the Bears pushed ahead by 40 on a pair of free throws by Kabir Mohammed with 15:24 to play.

Wojcik’s four-point play with 6:03 remaining made it a 103-51 contest, breaking the arena team scoring record and putting the Bears up by 50 points for the first time.

Missouri State finished the contest 38-of-73 (.521) from the field, 17-of-38 (.447) from long distance and 17-of-21 (.810) at the stripe with five dunks. The Bears also had a plus-22 rebound margin in the game and committed just 10 turnovers.

Da Silva, Ryan Kreklow and Mohammed added 13 points for MSU, while Dixon contributed 11 points, and Jared Ridder scored 10. Josh Webster added eight points and eight assists with no turnovers.

Owens’ point total matched his season scoring output from a year ago while also posting career highs in rebounds with six and assists with three in 21 minutes.

William Woods, an NAIA program from Fulton, Mo., finished 16-of-63 (.254) from the field, 4-of-24 (.167) from long range and 20-of-28 (.714) at the line with 34 rebounds and 10 turnovers.

The Bears begin conference play Wednesday at Southern Illinois (7 p.m.) before returning home on Saturday, Jan. 5 against Valparaiso in the Missouri Valley Conference home opener.

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