By Lance Jordan, Sports Editor
Classes may have let out the week of Thanksgiving. However, the men’s and women’s basketball teams had no break over the holiday week. The men’s team came off a loss from Indiana State as they prepared to face Webster University on November 21, while the women’s team defeated Lincoln in a closely contested match as they prepared to face Puerto Rico-Mayaguez on November 22.
The men’s team traveled to Webster University to play two 20 minute halves at Grant Gymnasium. Steven Davis, junior, business management, scored 11 points in the first half. Not able to gain the lead, the Gorlocks faced point deficits of 15-4 that turned into 20-17 that led to a 32-24 deficit. In the first half the Tritons secured 34 points, edging out a six point lead over the Gorlocks who walked away from the first half with 28 points.
In the second half, both teams played a more tightly contested matchup. The Gorlocks took the lead three minutes in 37-36 with a 9-2 run to post. Later, however, the Tritons fired off six unanswered shots that were capped off by Davis’ eighth three-pointer of the night. With UMSL scoring 38 points in the second half and Webster scoring 36 points, the matchup concluded with UMSL on top 72-64.
Including his eight three pointers, Davis led UMSL to victory with 26 points total. D.J. White, junior, physical education, also put up 13 points. The Tritons shot 52.8 percent and pulled 29 rebounds total. Elijah Watson, junior, accounting, also notably had eight points and five rebounds, while Joseph English, senior, communications, dished four assists and was able to gain UMSL two steals.
Playing their first home matchup against Puerto Rico-Mayaguez in the Mark Twain Athletic & Fitness Center, the women’s basketball team looked to follow the men’s performance just a day before. Playing four 10 minute quarters, UMSL took the first quarter 16-9. Early in the first quarter Jordan Fletcher, junior, marketing, gained UMSL its first five points which included two jumpers from in the paint and a free throw. Fletcher continued to help the team to victory, gaining another layup, while Puerto Rico-Mayaguez drew another foul while on Fletcher, allowing her to shoot another free throw point. Puerto Rico-Mayaguez scored 13 points to UMSL’s 10, but it was not enough to give them the lead as halftime hit with UMSL leading 26-22.
In the second half, UMSL continued their dominance, taking both the third and fourth quarters. With an assist from Fletcher, Sammie Sproul, junior, business, drilled in a three-pointer early in the third quarter, which helped the team walk out of the third quarter with 18 points. Puerto Rico-Mayaguez followed with 13 points, making it a 44-35 game going into the fourth quarter. Puerto Rico-Mayaguez found no answer for the 22 points UMSL put up. The final two points came from Sydney Bloch, senior, business and criminology, who was fouled by Puerto-Rico Mayaguez. The matchup concluded 66-49.
Fletcher led her team to victory, putting up 24 points. Bloch and Laura Szorenyi, sophomore, communications, both put up a total of 10 points. The Tritons shot an even 40 percent and pulled a 33-30 rebounding advantage. Shea O’Brien, senior, elementary education, pulled eight rebounds for the team.
Both teams will continue to have matchups through the remainder of November and December. Next week, both teams face Drury on December 1 and Missouri S&T on December 3. Follow both teams and other UMSL athletic teams at umsltritons.com.