Fort Hays State women's basketball starts fast in 80-60 win over Northeastern State
This time, the Fort Hays State women's basketball team added a quick start to go along with a strong finish.
The Tigers scored the game's first 11 points and never looked back en route to an 80-60 win over Northeastern State on Friday night at Gross Memorial Coliseum.
In Fort Hays State's previous two games — wins at Newman and Central Oklahoma — it took the Tigers until the second half to heat up offensively.
But FHSU (4-0) stormed out of the gate on Friday, putting together the 11-0 run in the game's first 2 minutes and 43 seconds.
"I thought we got off to a much better start, primarily because we got good shots, got good looks," FHSU coach Tony Hobson said. "Got a couple quick ones in transition and kind of got into a flow early. Our lull came later on in the second quarter, but we did get off to a much better start."
NSU was within six at the end of the first frame, but FHSU took a 10-point lead into halftime and maintained a double-digit advantage for nearly the entire second half, breaking away late.
Sydney Golladay kick-started the early run with a 3-pointer, followed by Olivia Hollenbeck's 3-point play, a bucket from Whitney Randall and a 3-pointer from Jaden Hobbs, forcing a RiverHawk timeout.
"(A good start) kind of sets the tone for the rest of the game," Hobbs said. "That's something we emphasize, being prepared and being ready to go from the jump."
Hobbs paced the Tigers with 20 points, adding 6 assists and 3 steals. Randall scored 18 points, while Cydney Bergrmann put up 15 points and grabbed six rebounds.
The Tigers threw out some different lineup combinations, with 10 different players seeing at least seven minutes. True freshman Emma Ruddle, a McPherson product, logged nine minutes for her most action so far.
"All the freshmen that have come in are really good, and that's really important for us to be successful," Hobbs said. "It is fun to see everybody out there at different times and different lineups. Everybody's good at something different. Everybody's better at one thing than another.
"It's just fun to put all those pieces together and let it all fall into place."
Randall was slowed by foul trouble in the first half, scoring just two points, but caught fire after halftime with 16 points.
"I think once she starts rolling, she really goes," Hobbs said. "I think it's really important offensively to know, once she gets hot, to get her the ball and let her kind of do her thing."
Bergmann's 15 points were a season-high. The 5-foot-8 junior forward has been in double figures in three out of the Tigers' four games.
Hobson said Bergmann's versatility is a luxury for the Tigers.
"We saw her last year guard 6-(foot)-4 just fine, and now I have her guarding a point guard, and she does a good job there," he said. "She's very versatile. Offensively, we just need to keep her elbow-in so she can get to the boards, because she plays with a lot of effort, a big motor, and she can really rebound for her size."
Hollenbeck added 7 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks while Golladay scored six points and had three assists. Madison Mittie grabbed six rebounds off the bench.
FHSU shot a season-best 53.3% from the floor (32 of 60) while holding NSU to 37 percent effort (21 of 57).
Cenia Hayes led NSU with 18 while Zaria Collins added 16 for the RiverHawks (2-4).
The Tigers will head into the holiday break after playing Rogers State at 2 p.m. Sunday at Gross Memorial Coliseum.
FORT HAYS 80, NORTHEASTERN STATE 60
Northeastern State (2-3) — Collins 7-16 2-6 16, Sanchez 3-14 0-0 8, Mo. Lee 0-1 2-2 2, Ma. Lee 3-10 2-4 10, Tomokino 1-1 0-0 2, Hayes 6-11 3-3 18, Ho 1-3 0-0 2, Regalado 0-0 2-2 2, Brooks 0-1 0-0 0, R. Brown 0-0 0-0 0, A. Brown 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 21-57 11-17 60.
Fort Hays State (4-0) — Hollenbeck 3-5 1-1 7, Golladay 2-5 0-0 6, Hobbs 8-12 1-1 20, Randall 8-14 0-0 18, Bergmann 6-9 3-3 15, Wagner 1-4 0-2 2, Mittie 1-5 2-3 4, McFarren 0-1 0-0 0, Ruddle 0-1 2-2 2, Sallach 2-2 0-0 4, Reither 0-1 0-0 0, Thompson 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 32-60 9-12 80.
3-point goals — Northeastern State 7-21 (Hayes 3-6, Sanchez 2-8, Lee 2-5, Collins 0-1, Brooks 0-1). Fort Hays 7-21 (Hobbs 3-5, Golladay 2-4, Randall 2-6, Wagner 0-1, Mittie 0-3, McFarren 0-1, Ruddle 0-1). Rebounds — NSU 29, FHSU 36. Assists — NSU 9 (Collins 3), FHSU 17 (Hobbs 6). Turnovers — NSU 12, FHSU 13. Fouled out — none. Attendance — 405.