After a midweek bye, the Fort Hays State men's and women's basketball teams will kick off a three-game road swing against Nebraska Kearney on Saturday.
The Tiger women enter the 2 p.m. matchup with the Lopers at 18-1 overall and 9-1 in MIAA play, sitting in a tie for first place with Washburn.
"I think our frame of mind is good," FHSU coach Tony Hobson said. "We have a good long-term outlook. This team has aspirations in mind, and I think when you have that, it's easier to make it through the dog days (of the season)."
FHSU is coming off a pair of blowout wins over Missouri Western and Northwest Missouri. The Loper women, who enter 12-7 overall and 5-5 in MIAA play, took a 62-53 win over Missouri Western this past Saturday.
Tigers' senior forward Tatyana Legette is averaging a team-high 12.3 points and 8.5 rebounds while juniors Lanie Page and Kacey Kennett are adding 11.7 and 10.7, respectively.
Megan Holt (12.2), Kelsey Sanger (11.0) and Brooke Carlson (10.9) are averaging in double digits for UNK.
The FHSU women earned a 62-53 win over the Lopers back on Dec. 4 in Hays.
On the men's side, the Tigers will be looking to bounce back from an 81-69 loss to No. 2 Northwest Missouri. FHSU is 13-6 overall and 7-3 in MIAA play, sitting in a four-way tie for second place in the loss column with Missouri Southern, Lincoln and Washburn.
"We've got a great opportunity to finish second here, and anytime you're second in the MIAA, that obviously puts you in a possibility of postseason play," Fort Hays men's coach Mark Johnson said. "We just got to battle through here and try to close the season as best we can. Five weeks is very short, but it's also very long, and if you're not working hard, you can get a lot worse. We need to continue to try to get better."
The Loper men are 6-13 overall and 1-9 in the MIAA. UNK is coming off an 83-79 loss to Missouri Western.
Senior forward Brady Werth leads the FHSU men with 16 points per game while senior guard Marcus Cooper is adding 14.3 a game. UNK is paced by is paced by Kanon Koster's 17.1 points a game.
The Tiger men won the previous matchup with UNK, 76-73.