(WARRENSBURG, Mo.) —The Central Missouri Mules shot 50 percent from the field and led from start to finish in a 77-58 win over Lindenwood on Saturday afternoon at the UCM Multipurpose Buidling. The Mules led by as many as 21 as they improved to 16-4 overall and 8-3 in MIAA play.
The game was tied 2-2 in the early going, but a layup from Charles Hammork and another from Dillon Deck put the Mules in front 6-3. The Lions (8-12, 3-7 MIAA) tied the game at 8-all with 15:24 left in the first half, but a 16-4 run gave the Mules a 24-12 lead they would never relinquish.
Lindenwood got to within eight at 26-18 with just under eight minutes to play in the opening stanza, but five straight points from Hammork pushed the lead back to 13 with 6:57 remaining. Preston Brunz‘s layup and a tip-in from Dillon Deck pushed the lead to 16 with just over five minutes to play in the half and the Mules would lead 41-27 at the intermission.
The Lions cut the lead to 11 in the early minutes of the second half, but a layup from Deck and a three from Ryan Magdziarz put UCM back in front by 16 at the 15:42 mark.
Lindenwood crept back to within 10 at 52-42 with 13:41 to play in the game, but Kyle Wolf‘s three-point play put Central Missouri back up by 13. The lead increased to 17 on a tip-in from Deck and Wolf’s second three-point play.
A pair of free throws from Michael Boos and a jumper from Darris Smith cut the UCM lead to 13 with 9:13 left in the game, but a 9-1 run gave the Mules a 21-point advantage, 69-48, with 4:12 to play and they were never threatened the rest of the way.
Deck led UCM with his third double-double of the season, 21 points and 12 rebounds. Hammork finished with 14 points and six rebounds and Wolf added 12 points off the bench.
The Mules shot 29 of 58 from the field, but just 3 of 16 from beyond the arc for 19 percent. UCM was 16 of 21 at the free throw line for 76 percent. UCM out-rebounded the Lions 39-26 and held a 38-14 advantage in points in the paint. The Mules finished with 14 assists on 29 made shots and had just nine turnovers.
The Lions were led by Smith’s 11 points, while Aaron Ramirez had 10. LWU was 17 of 41 from the field for 42 percent and 6 of 19 from three-point range for 32 percent. The Lions made 18 of 32 at the charity stripe for 56 percent.
Central Missouri held a 24-5 edge in second chance points and scored 26 points of 14 Lindenwood turnovers.
The Mules are off until next Saturday, Feb. 1 when they host Missouri Southern at 3:30 p.m. The game can be heard live on 1450 KOKO, 98.5 The Bar andwarrensburgradio.com with Greg Hassler and Bill Turnage on the call. That day is also the 1983-84 Mules and Jennies National Championship 30-year reunion with members of both teams being honored at halftime.