SEWARD, Neb. – It was a tale of two halves for Midland University’s men’s basketball team on Wednesday night. After a solid first half, offensive struggles in the second half made all the difference.
The Warriors (9-13, 4-9 GPAC) fell to the Concordia Bulldogs (11-10, 4-9 GPAC) by a final score of 66-51 after Midland managed a mere 15 points in the final 20 minutes of action.
“We opportunities in the first half to get a little more cushion, but we just had some self-inflicted errors that are completely inexcusable and this is what you get,” commented head coach Oliver Drake. “We’ve asked guys to do things that they are fully capable of doing and they are not doing them right now. It starts with us as coaches. We’ve got to coach them better and get them to do those things and we’ll have some success. It’s a lot of stuff that is under our control that we’re not doing a good job of right now.”
After taking a 36-34 lead into the locker room, the Warriors failed to find any kind of offensive rhythm in the second half. As a team, Midland was just 6-25 from the field in the final period, with each field goal make coming from freshman Malik Martin.
Martin was just 7-18 from the floor in the game and finished with 15 points. Freshman Bowen Sandquist also finished with 15 points and was 4-8 from the field, including being 3-5 from behind the three-point line.
Sandquist only attempted one field goal in the second half. His only points in the period came on a pair of late free throw attempts.
Brevin Sloup and Justin Wiersema led Concordia with 14 points each as they both made six field goals on the night. Sloup finished with seven assists, three rebounds, and a steal, while Wiersema contributed seven rebounds and four assists.
Grant Wragge (11 points) and Carter Kent (10 points) were the other Bulldogs in double figures, with Wragge’s points coming off the bench.
Concordia was 28-49 (57.1 percent) from the field compared to just 18-53 (34 percent) for Midland. Concordia’s bench also outscored Midland’s 15-0. The Warriors took advantage of Bulldog mistakes and turned 14 turnovers into 13 points.
The teams went back-and-forth in the first half as neither team built a lead larger than seven points and the game saw 13 lead changes and four ties. Midland’s seven-point lead came after back-to-back three-pointers from Sandquist and senior Reggie Gradwell with just under seven minutes to play before halftime.
Concordia began the second half on a 10-0 run to take an eight-point lead. The Warriors didn’t score a field goal for more than four minutes to start the period.
Midland’s final field goal came with 8:11 on the clock as Martin’s basket cut the Concordia lead to just six points. The Bulldogs outscored the Warriors 11-2 to finish the game as the only points the Warriors managed came from two Sandquist free throws with 2:25 remaining.
The Warriors’ offense struggled mightily in the second half, especially after losing junior Bryce Parsons to an ankle injury midway through the period. Parsons finished with nine points, four rebounds, three steals, and two assists as the injury ends the junior’s consecutive double-double streak at four games.
Coaches do not believe Parsons’ injury is serious, but his status moving forward is still uncertain.
Midland returns to action on Saturday as they host Mount Marty (6-16, 2-11 GPAC). The Lancers defeated the Warriors in Yankton, South Dakota 74-71 in the first meeting this season back on November 17, 2018. Tipoff for the rematch in Fremont is set for 4:00 p.m. inside the Wikert Event Center on January 19.
SEWARD, Neb. – Midland University’s women’s basketball team knew it needed to bring its best effort when facing a top tier opponent on Wednesday. The Warriors battled hard for 40 minutes, but couldn’t hold on late.
The (RV) Warriors (11-9, 6-8 GPAC) fought hard against the No. 2 Concordia Bulldogs (18-2, 12-2 GPAC), but fell by a final score of 84-74 in a close conference matchup.
The Warriors finished the game 28-57 (49.1 percent) from the floor, better than Concordia’s final tally of 28-71 (39.4 percent). But, Midland ultimately coughed it up too many times as 24 turnovers led directly to 27 points for the Bulldogs.
Midland and Concordia were evenly matches throughout the first quarter of action as the game saw four ties and four lead changes in the first 10 minutes. Back-to-back buckets for Quinn Wragge gave the Bulldogs a seven-point lead, their largest of the quarter, with a minute left in the period.
The second quarter was tight for the first five minutes as the Warriors managed to keep the Concordia lead in the single digits, cutting the deficit to as few as two points midway through the period.
Concordia responded to the Midland threat with an 11-0 run that boosted the lead to 13 with less than three minutes to play before halftime. The Bulldogs carried a 49-38 lead into the break.
Midland outscored Concordia 22-15 in the third quarter, significantly cutting into the Bulldogs’ lead. A three-pointer from Maddie Meadows sparked a 12-4 run that helped the Warriors cut the lead to five with three minutes left until the fourth quarter.
Lexis Haase‘s jumper beat the third quarter buzzer and pulled the Warriors to within four points of the lead to start the final 10 minutes.
After battling all game, the Warriors let the Bulldogs slip away. Concordia began the fourth quarter on an 18-4 run that gave the Bulldogs an 18-point advantage, their largest lead of the game, with just over five minutes to play.
Midland followed the run by outscoring the Bulldogs 10-2 to finish the game, but the damage had been done as Concordia managed to hang on for an 84-74 victory.
The Bulldogs were led by the scoring duo of Taylor Cockerill and Philomena Lammers, who finished with 19 points, respectively. Wragge was the only other Bulldog in double-figures with 15 points.
Midland also had a high-scoring tandem consisting of Haase and senior Maddie Egr, who each finished with 20 points. Haase’s 20 points off the bench is a career-high for the freshman and led the way as Midland’s bench outscored Concordia’s 37-22.
Egr finished 9-11 from the field and also contributed eight rebounds, one block, one steal, and one assist to the Midland effort.
Midland, usually a good-shooting team, was just 6-24 (25 percent) from three-point range on Wednesday and still managed to keep pace with the nation’s third-best scoring offense. Despite slipping away late, the Warriors showed yet again that they are not going to be classified as an easy win for anybody that they face.
Midland will be back in action on Saturday as the Lady Warriors host Mount Marty (10-10, 4-10 GPAC). In the first meeting this season, Midland escaped Yankton, South Dakota with a 66-58 overtime victory back on November 17, 2018. The second act will be held inside the Wikert Event Center in Fremont and is set for a 2:00 p.m. tipoff on January 19.