Lincoln heads to Pittsburg State for MIAA doubleheader

Lincoln's DJ Richardson shoots a jump shot during a game earlier this season against Washburn at Jason Gym. (Ken Barnes/News Tribune)
Lincoln's DJ Richardson shoots a jump shot during a game earlier this season against Washburn at Jason Gym. (Ken Barnes/News Tribune)

The Lincoln men’s basketball team will look to avenge a loss from earlier this season when it travels to take on the Pittsburg State Gorillas today in the second leg of an MIAA doubleheader.

Tip-off is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. in Pittsburg, Kan.

The Blue Tigers hosted the Gorillas on Dec. 30 and dropped a 77-60 decision at Jason Gym. Lincoln fell behind by 14 points in the first half and was never able to make up the ground in the loss.

Pittsburg State (14-8, 10-6 MIAA) enters as one of the hottest teams in the conference with a five-game win streak. The Gorillas kept the streak going with a 69-60 victory Wednesday against Central Missouri.

Lincoln (13-8, 8-7) is coming off an 83-77 loss Thursday at Missouri Southern and has dropped two of three since its 76-66 victory against then-No. 22 Missouri Western on Jan. 24.

Pittsburg State has been led by 6-foot-6 senior forward Jeramy Shaw since he became eligible in Mid-December. Shaw scored 29 points in each of his first two games and paces the Gorillas’ lineup with 16.1 points per game on 59 percent shooting.

Sophomore guard Max Alexander (5-11), who poured in a game-high 28 points in the first matchup, is next at 15.5 per game, senior wing Deshaun English II (6-6) averages 14.0 points and freshman guard Jordan Frison (5-11) has chipped in 13.3 per contest.

Pittsburg State is currently fourth in the MIAA in scoring at 76.5 per game but is 10th in scoring defense, allowing 72.3 per game. Lincoln is 10th in scoring (70.6 points per game) and fifth in scoring defense (66.0).

The Gorillas lead the all-time series 35-12.

III

It will be yet another difficult test for the Lincoln women’s basketball team when it squares off with the Pittsburg State Gorillas today.

Tip-off is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. for the women’s contest in Pittsburg, Kan.

Lincoln (6-15, 2-13 MIAA) is coming off a 76-57 loss Thursday at No. 24 Missouri Southern and has lost six straight games.

It will be a tall task to break the losing skid today against a Pittsburg State team that has won five in a row.

The Gorillas (17-5, 11-5) are coming off an 82-80 victory Wednesday against Central Missouri and have not lost since a 75-62 defeat Jan. 20 against Washburn.

Pittsburg State won the first matchup this season after picking up a 73-57 victory Dec. 18 at Jason Gym.

It was the 18th consecutive victory for the Gorillas in the all-time series, which they lead 41-1. The Blue Tigers’ only victory in the series came March 1, 2012, in the MIAA Tournament.

Pittsburg State bolsters the second-best scoring offense in the MIAA at 76.5 points per game and the ninth-best scoring defense at 64.0 points allowed per contest. Lincoln enters 13th in both scoring offense (63.0) and defense (72.1).

The Gorillas’ offense is led by 5-foot-11 junior guard Grace Pyle at 16.5 points per game, junior foward Karenna Gerber (6-0) is close behind at 16.2 and freshman wing Macie Mays (5-11) averages 11.2 per contest.