Roos close out home schedule with a win

U-News Staff

On Saturday night, the UMKC men’s basketball team was closing out the best ever league play home record for the school.

With a win on Saturday night, 70-65 against Grand Canyon and a win Thursday night, 69-50 against Utah Valley, the Roos ended the season with a 6-1 league play record at home.

The victories also guarantee that UMKC will have a winning conference play record for the first time since 2005-06.

“I thought we really defended tonight,” Head Coach Kareem Richardson said. “That Grand Canyon team, from one through five, are really explosive so to hold them to 5-of-21 from three was huge. Both seniors were big for us, (Reese) made his mind up he was going to get to the rim and he was big-time tonight.”

Senior Reese Holliday scored a career-high 24 points in the game. As a team, the Roos out-rebounded the Antelopes 33-31.

On Thursday night, the Roos played a strong game to beat the Utah Valley Wolverines. The team held a 10 point lead early in the game and went into the half with a 32-26 lead.

“We started the second half off poorly and they took a lead, but our guys bounced back and Reese (Holliday) helped change the momentum with a couple and-ones,” Richardson said.

Holliday scored all of his 16 points in the second half. Junior Thaddeus Smith contributed nine points and nine rebounds during the game, and Junior Kevin Franceschi had 10 points. Sophomore Martez Harrison had 14 points, seven rebounds and four steals.

The men’s basketball team will finish out the regular season on the road against Texas Pan American on Saturday. A victory for the Roos would mean second place in the league. It would also give the Roos the No. 2 seed heading into the WAC tournament.