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Money ball increase proof positive for Loper men

Ty Danielson, a senior at UNK, makes a three-point field goal, Dec. 19, 2017, versus Hastings College (KHGI)

After a pair of wins to start the conference season, UNK men's basketball has dropped four of the last five with the only win coming against Hastings College out of the NAIA.

Oddly enough – it's the game they are drawing on for a blueprint of how they can start to pick up a few more wins as they get back into the MIAA swing.

"Against Hastings we really saw flashes of ourselves from the pre–season, it seemed like no one missed," said senior guard Lane Rohrich. "And against Hastings I know we hit more than 10 three pointers and we haven't really done that in any other games that I know of."

In a 29–point win over the Broncos, the Lopers spread the wealth with seven different players hitting at least one three pointer, gashing their Tri–City neighbors with 13 triples on the night, five more than what they usually average.

"We're just going to try and build off of it, I think it really helped a lot of guys boost confidence and I think going into 2018 it will be a big thing to see," Rohrich says.

Now with nothing but conference games ahead, the Lopers plan to take more gambles from deep.

"My philosophy is we want to shoot the three well and we want to get out on the three's against who we're playing against and try to limit their three's. When we do a good job of both of those, we gain a huge advantage," head coach Kevin Lofton said.

Shooting well is not a problem for the Lope Show – they're 34th in Division II with a 75.7% rate from the free throw stripe, but it hasn't quite yet translated to the long ball. UNK's 36% completion percentage from the outside is 149th best in DII.

They could also up the number of attempts, currently firing away a little more than half of what the most aggressive teams put up from three–land. Adelphi leads the nation with 568 attempts, while the Lopers sit at 136th with their 322 shots.

UNK is at Fort Hays State, Saturday, 4 p.m.

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