Fast start propels MSU past WNMU

Midwestern State found the solution to its recent shooting woes at home. On Thursday, the Mustangs used their transition attack to jump out to an early lead in a 70-57 victory over Western New Mexico.

Eight of the Mustangs’ 21 points in the first quarter came via the fast break. In the opening quarter, MSU hit 10 of 18 shots while forcing five turnovers and building a 10-point lead, and Western New Mexico never recovered.

“Naturally, transition helps gain confidence, but we had a mismatch in that area, and we wanted to exploit that early with us not being very deep today due to injuries,” MSU coach Christopher Reay said. “We wanted to run fast early and hopefully get the lead then execute down the stretch.”

Five players scored in double figures for MSU, led by Shawnisay Millar and Hannah Reynolds, who scored 14 points. The win is crucial for the Mustangs, trying to secure a spot in the Lone Star Conference tournament in three weeks.

“Top to bottom, no one quits in this league,” Reay said. “If you want to host in the first round in March, you have to win on the road; otherwise, you’ll be back on the road. So we want to win these next two road games and hopefully not worry about a road game in the tournament.”

Midwestern State travels to meet Texas A&M-Kingsville and Texas A&M International before returning home for its final homestand of the regular season on Feb. 24 against Arkansas-Fort Smith. The Ovarian Cancer Awareness night will begin at 5:30 p.m., and everyone is encouraged to wear teal.

Midwestern State 70, Western New Mexico 57

WESTERN NEW MEXICO (5-12, 1-8)

Alina Simon 2-7 0-0 5; Cassandra Vickery 1-8 0-0 2; Cynaye Bobbitt 4-13 4-7 14; Kaela Chavez 3-6 0-0 9; Olivia Lee 7-13 1-2 15; Zyan Smith 0-2 0-0 0; Myla Lee 0-4 2-2 2; Charlize Bustillos 1-5 0-0 3; Destiny Johnson 0-0 0-0 0; Amaya Vasquez 3-3 1-3 7. Totals 21-61 8-14 57.

MIDWESTERN STATE (12-10, 6-6)

Shawnisay Millar 5-10 3-6 14; Frances King 5-11 0-0 11; Hannah Reynolds 7-13 0-0 14; Markayla Johnson 1-3 1-1 3; Morgan Lenahan 5-12 2-3 13; Eternity Jackson 1-1 0-0 3; Sheridan Bostic 3-6 3-4 12; Yasmine Sifaoui 0-0 0-2 0; Mandy Withey 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 27-57 9-16 70.

WNMU –  10  15  20  12 – 57

MSU    –  21  14  14  21 – 70   

3-Point Goals — WNMU 7-14 (Simon 1-4, Vickery 0-1, Bobbitt 2-2, Chavez 3-5, Bustillos 1-2); MSU 7-19 (Millar 1-3, King 1-3, Johnson 0-1, Lenahan 1-5, Jackson 1-1, Bostic 3-6). Fouled Out — WNMU (None); MSU (None). Rebounds — WNMU 40 (Bobbitt 12); MSU 35 (Reynolds 8). Assists — WNMU 14 (Simon 4); MSU 15 (King, Lenahan 5). Total Fouls — WNMU 17, MSU 11. Technicals — WNMU (None); MSU (None). A — 811.