McNeese Men’s Basketball starts 2022-23 season with a dominate win vs. Champion Christian

Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 11:11 PM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - The McNeese men’s basketball team got their 2022-23 season started on Monday night at the Legacy Center as they hosted the Champion Christian Tigers. The Cowboys entered the season with sophomore forward Christian Shumate getting named to the Men’s Basketball Preseason All-Southland Conference First Team, and against the Tigers, Shumate would have his way.

McNeese started the game on a 15-5 run early as transfer Malachi Rhodes set the tone early with 12 first half points. At the half the Cowboys would take a 25 point lead into the half. In the 2nd half the Cowboys started to really pull away as they hit 8 total three pointers, and only turned the ball over twice. McNeese shot 56% from the field on the day as they went on to win 110-54.

The Cowboys dominated on the offensive glass getting 21, as that translated to 34 second chance points. It was a fantastic opening performance as all 11 players that entered the game for the Cowboys scored at least one bucket.

McNeese top performers:

  • #24 Christian Shumate: 20 points, 12 rebounds, 1 assists, 1 steal
  • #15 Zach Scott: 15 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assist, 1 steals
  • #5 Johnathan Massie: 13 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steal
  • #23 Malachi Rhodes: 12 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assist, 1 blocks
  • #10 Roberts Berze: 11 points, 3 rebounds, 1 steal

After the game Head Coach John Aikens raved about how his post players fought on the glass stating,

“well you guys know that have been around here we probably emphasize that as much as anything we do is getting offensive rebounds we want to lead the country in that category we work on it daily we chart it every single day...To see the translation from practice to the game was good I thought Malachi really set the tone I thought Malachi came in and got some big ones early and just cleared space was really good...Christian is obviously a special talent I felt like he could’ve got 2 or 3 more we were challenging him to get to 15″

The Cowboys will head to New Orleans on Friday as they take on Tulane at 6:00pm.