TNE Editor
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NSU men gears for Fort Hays State Thursday

Published 2/8/18

The Series 
Northeastern State trails the overall series 7-5 to Fort Hays State and in MIAA play at home, the RiverHawks hold onto a slight 3-2 edge on the Tigers.  NSU beat Fort Hays State 66-60 in their last meeting at the NSU Event Center and the win propelled the RiverHawks into the MIAA Postseason Tournament.

The Coaches
Mark Downey was introduced as NSU's tenth men's basketball coach on April 11, 2017 and carries a 211-118 overall head coaching record, with four NCAA Division II Tournament Appearances, and has been named Coach of the Year six times.  Downey comes to NSU after two seasons at Fort Wayne (NCAA DI) as the program's top assistant on the bench, and has helped the Mastodons to appearances in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT) and the NIT, while going 44-23.  Prior to Fort Wayne, Downey spent the 2014-15 season at Bowling Green where they went 20-12, and he helped direct them into the second round of the CIT.

Mark Johnson enters his 17th season as head coach of the Fort Hays State University men's basketball program in 2017-18. He is the all-time coaching wins leader in FHSU history with a career record of 335-158 in 17 seasons, ranking among the top 25 active NCAA Division II men's basketball coaches in winning percentage (.684). Johnson has led the Tigers to seven NCAA Tournament appearances in his time at FHSU.

Last Time Out for NSU
Ten unanswered points by Central Missouri midway through the second quarter proved to be too much to overcome for the RiverHawks on Saturday, falling 75-66 in MIAA play.  Jamir Andrews paced NSU with 22 points and Trent Cantrell added 11 off of the bench at Central Missouri. Northeastern State led for the better part of the first half until the final five minutes where the Mules scored nine unanswered to take a 35-27 advantage into the locker room.  On the glass, NSU held a 32-to-29 edge on the Mules with Andrews having eight, Josh Bougher had the squads second highest total with seven.  

Last Time Out for Fort Hays State
Fort Hays State dropped a contest at home for just the second time this season on Saturday (Feb. 3) as Washburn left Gross Memorial Coliseum with a 76-60 decision.  Washburn used runs of 11-0 and 9-0 in the first half to build a 16-point lead with 5:39 before halftime. The early large deficit proved too much for the Tigers to overcome in the end after they trimmed the lead down to five by halftime, 36-31, helped by a 10-0 run. Brady Werth was the only Tiger to reach double figures in scoring with 16 points before fouling out late. Hadley Gillum, Aaron Nicholson, and Cooper all added seven.

Nearing 1,000
NSU senior returner Montre' Williams is the lone NSU player who has seen action in the past three seasons for the RiverHawks and was an All-MIAA selection last year.   The senior from Copperas Cove, Texas led the RiverHawks in scoring with 12.3 points per game one year ago and has 975 career points in 102 games played.

The Graduate 
NSU graduate student Jamir Andrews is averaging 15.6 points a game in MIAA play which is tied for tenth best through 13 conference games played.  Overall, Andrews has seven games this season where he has scored at least 20-points, and is averaging 17.3 per game in the last four contests.

Up next
Northeastern State hosts Nebraska-Kearney next on Saturday at 3:30 p.m.

Previous Article NSU basketball falls to Pitt State, looks ahead to road games
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