Rally Stopped Short: Omaha Mavericks Lose After Overcoming 16-point Deficit

Photo Courtesy of Omaha.com
Photo Courtesy of Omaha.com

Andrew Nelson

The Omaha men’s basketball team’s woes at Western Hall in Macomb, Illinois continued last Wednesday night, as the Mavericks dropped an 83-to-76 road game. They are now 0-5 all-time at Western Illinois’ home court since joining Division I. Seniors Jake White and Devin Patterson led the way for the Mavs both scoring in double-figures and White earning his sixth double-double of the season.

White had 21 points and 13 rebounds, tying a career high in boards. Patterson had 16 points, 12 of which came from beyond the arch. The pair also had help from sophomore Tre’Shawn Thurman who contributed 12 points, and Tra-Deon Hollins who had nine.

The Mavs squandered an early lead before going into the half tied at 37. Western Illinois opened up the second half strong and took the lead with 10:13 to go. The Mavs wouldn’t be able to overcome the Leathernecks lead the rest of the game.

Mike Miklusak was a big part of Western Illinois’ comeback and finished with 14. Garret Covington led all scorers with 23. Jabari Sandifer also helped out the Leatherneck cause chipping in 17.

Omaha as a team shot 43 percent from the field compared to Western Illinois’ 50 percent, but narrowly outrebounded the Leathernecks 39 to 38. The Mavs made 11 three-pointers compared to Western Illinois’ six.

Omaha opened up a three-game home stand last Saturday where they lost their second straight. The Mavs dropped a 75-to-72 contest to Denver at Baxter Arena despite staging a comeback late in the second half from 16 points down.

Patterson led all scorers with 26 points, and Thurman added 17 more for the Mavs. Tre-Deon Hollins, the nation’s leader in steals, matched his seven points with seven steals. The Mavs as a team shot 41 percent from the floor, scored 20 second chance points off Pioneer offensive rebounds, and were outrebounded 39-to-25.

The Pioneers led the entire game, and despite a tight 34-31 halftime lead, they stretched it out into a 16-point lead early in the second half. The Mavs stormed back after three pointers from Hollins and Tim Smallwood. They tied the game with 1:45 left on a trey from Patterson, but would never overcome the lead.

The Mavs lead in the Summit League is shrinking. They now sit at 15-10 (7-4 in the Summit League). The Mavs get a chance to make some noise this Wednesday night as Omaha will welcome in the conference-leading Jackrabbits of South Dakota State for a 7 p.m. matchup that will stream on ESPN 3.