Men’s Hot Streak Powers Undefeated Start

The University of Central Oklahoma’s mens basketball team began their 2018-2019 season undefeated as they beat Northwestern Oklahoma State University, 88-80 Friday and Southwestern Oklahoma State University, 114-82 Saturday afternoon.

“I’m proud of the guys today and happy with the outcome,” said head coach Tom Hankins. “It was good to get two wins under the belt on the road and I’m glad that we fought hard and executed.”

Senior Josh Holliday led the Bronchos through both games as he scored 27 points on 9-12 shooting against NWOSU, and 28 points on 10-16 shooting against SWOSU.

“I’m really proud of Josh for starting his senior season well. It’s good to have leaders like him,”Hankins said. “He is such a talented kid and when he gets it going, you see he’s capable of some pretty good things.”

In UCO’s first game of the season, the Bronchos led NWOSU by 14 points in the first half as UCO shot 46.3 percent from the floor and 45 percent from behind the arc.

The Bronchos had five players in double figures as along with Holliday, Marquis Johnson recorded 16 points, Jordan Hemphill added 15 with a team-high nine rebounds, Adarius Avery had 12 and Ashford Golden submitted 10.

It was the Bronchos 12th straight season opening with a win. Their fourth straight under Hankins.

“I’m proud of the guys for their effort today,” Hankins said. “The first game is always iffy because we haven’t really practiced that much. But the team came out and fought hard early and got a good win.”

In their matchup with SWOSU, the Bronchos battled to an 11-8 lead and went on a 12-0 run. UCO finished the first half with 64 points while only giving up 34 to the Bulldogs. 

In the second half, the two teams were only separated by two points as the Bronchos scored 50 to SWOSU’s 48. 

The Bronchos had four players in double figures. Marquis Johnson led the team in assists with six, right behind him was Jordan London with five.

UCO will travel to 10th-ranked Southern Nazarene University on Thursday at 7 p.m. for their third consecutive road game to start the season.

Their first home will be against Southwestern Christian University on Nov. 17.

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