Tiger women set to face unbeaten Jennies

Rick Peterson Jr.
Hays Daily News
FHSU's Olivia Hollenbeck looks to score on Saturday against Emporia State.

Despite suffering a heartbreaking one-point loss to Emporia State this past Saturday, Fort Hays State coach Tony Hobson thought his Tigers showed fight and toughness. 

The Tigers will need to display those traits again when they face a huge test against Central Missouri.

The Jennies will take a 6-0 record into Thursday’s 5:30 p.m. game with the 5-1 Tigers at Warrensburg, Mo.

FHSU fell 62-61 to ESU last Saturday. The Tigers rallied from a nine-point fourth-quarter deficit to take the lead, but FHSU surrendered a late ESU bucket and missed a shot at the buzzer. 

“We had a lot of fight in us when we got behind and buckled down and made two good runs at them,” Hobson said. “... Found out that our kids will hang in there and play till the last horn, for sure.”

The Tigers will look to have a short memory after the tough loss. The Hornets escaped after Whitney Randall’s mid-range jumper rattled out at the buzzer. 

After the game, Randall came back out on the floor and took several jump shots. 

“I think all players have their own way of coping and getting their heads straight,” Hobson said. “I think for her, she just wasn’t ready to let it go. When she went out (after the game) and took a few shots and took a couple deep breaths, I think it probably helped her a lot as she went about her business the rest of that day, and then on Sunday she probably felt better about it. 

“I’ve been through that myself a few times. Each player copes with it a little bit different.”

The Jennies lost its two top scorers from last year, Morgan Fleming and Megan Skaggs, but haven’t missed a beat so far this year. UCM is coming off a 67-45 win over Washburn back on Dec. 17. 

“I’m impressed that they seemed to have recovered nicely from losing the top two players in the conference last year,” Hobson said. “Who can recover that quick? That’s pretty impressive, I think. While they might not be as good as they were last year, it looks like they’re pretty good. It looks like they reloaded pretty well.

“They’re doing a lot of the same things they have done in the past, and they’re doing it pretty well.”

The Tigers will be without senior guard Madison Mittie for the second straight game because of COVID-19 protocols. 

“This is what every team is facing where they have to play some games where they don't have all their personnel,” Hobson said.