The Midwestern State Mustangs concluded a long winter road trip by winning their fifth straight game, defeating South Dakota Mines 83-57
night in Rapid City.
The Mustangs (9-3) concluded their 6-day, 4,564 mile journey in grand fashion by whipping the Hardrockers of South Dakota Mines (2-9) not only on the scoreboard, but in many key statistical areas as well.
MSU shot a combined 43.8 percent from the field for the game compared to SDM's 34 percent. The Mustangs also dominated the glass, outrebounding the Hardrockers 48-31, including 13 offensive boards.
Junior guard Bretson McNeal had another great night, scoring 18 points on 6-11 shooting, including 4-6 from beyond the arc. McNeal led all scorers in the game while only playing 21 minutes.
"He (McNeal) is really getting back into the flow of the game," said MSU head coach Nelson Haggerty. "We played a little tired tonight, after this long trip. We tried to limit our guys' minutes but Bretson was still very effective."
Every player that stepped on the court for the Mustangs played at least nine minutes, with the most playing time going to junior guard Hershell Grant who played 22 minutes. Grant scored 10 points, while senior guard Derrell Gibbs once again had a big first half scoring 12. Gibbs scored 13 points in the first half of MSU's 90-83 double OT win vs Lynn (Fla.) just three nights prior.
"Derrell really pushed the ball well in our early offense," said Haggerty. "He pushed it into their secondary and forced the action. He had a great first half."
The Mustangs retained control throughout the majority of the game, only trailing in the first
of the contest. The Mustangs built a 39-27 halftime lead that blossomed into a comfortable 20 point margin by the 7 minute mark of the second half. MSU led by as many as 28.
Senior forward Abiodun Adegoke had a great road trip for the Mustangs. Adegoke grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds against South Dakota Mines
. Adegoke had previously set that high at 12 against Nova Southeastern on December 13.
"Abiodun has been making strong plays," said Nelson Haggerty. "He has been our most consistent guy around the basket. Not many guys in our league can keep him off of the glass."
The Mustangs return to Wichita Falls
to host Saint Gregory's (Okla.) at Ligon Coliseum. The tip-off is set for