Turnovers cost Griffons

Men's Basketball Sports

The Missouri Western Griffons (8-8) had trouble shooting the ball in their 69-55 loss to the Pittsburg State Gorillas (12-4).

The Griffons managed to shoot only 36 percent from the field. Head Coach Tom Smith believes the Griffons need to be more disciplined during games.

“Our shot selection was poor from beginning to end,” Smith said.

The Griffons got off to a fast start as they jumped out to a 12-6 lead. The Gorillas closed the half out on a 20-11 run to take 26-23 lead into the half.

The Gorillas came out hot in the second half beginning the half on a 11-4 run. Coach Smith believes turnovers played a role in that run.

“We just had a lot of poor possessions to begin the second half,” Smith said. “We had three turnovers in the first five possessions.”

The Griffons were led in scoring by Ray Brown he had 14 points on 5-7 shooting. The other players in double figures  for the Griffons were Lonnel Johnson with 12 points and Reggie Bunch with 10 points. Bunch who leads the team in scoring believes keeping their heads in games is important for the Griffons.

“To have more success in conference we need to work on execution and staying focus,” Smith said.

Turnovers played a big factor in the game. The Griffons committed 21 turnovers in the game. The turnovers led to 30 points for the Gorillas. Coach Smith knows for his team to be successful they need to limit turnovers.

“We need to work on limiting turnovers and taking better care of the ball,” Smith said.

The Griffons did do a good job of rebounding in the game. They out rebounded the Gorillas 40-39. They also had 17 offensive rebounds.

The Griffons also struggled from beyond the three point line in the game. The Griffons hit only 3-15 three pointers in the contest. The Gorillas shot great from beyond the three point line making 10-16 three pointers for an astonishing 62 percent. Coach Smith doesn’t believe the Griffons weren’t ready to play.

“We had a couple of decent practices heading into the game, so it wasn’t a lack of being ready,” Smith said.

  The Griffons will get back in action Jan. 29 when they travel to Southwest Baptist and they will also play Feb. 2 as they travel to face rival Washburn. The Griffons will look to pick up conference win on their road trip. The Griffons will need to limit turnovers and play better defensively to pick up wins. 

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