Thompson helps Storm blow by Fresno Pacific for eighth straight victory

FRESNO, Calif. – Dixie State’s men’s basketball team inched closer to securing a bye in the upcoming Pacific West Conference Tournament by beating an athletic Fresno Pacific program in a high-scoring game on the road Saturday night.

DeQuan Thompson, file photo from Dixie State University vs. Western Oregon University, St. George, Utah, Nov. 25, 2014 | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News
DeQuan Thompson, file photo from Dixie State University vs. Western Oregon University, St. George, Utah, Nov. 25, 2014 | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

dsulogoDeQuan Thompson had a season-high 24 points and Zach Robbins added 21 points and 8 rebounds to help the Red Storm beat Fresno Pacific 94-80 on Saturday afternoon.

DSU extended its winning streak to eight games, improving its season record to 19-6 overall and 16-3 in the Pacific West Conference.

“This is a tough place to play,” Dixie State head coach Jon Judkins said. “I’m happy with our 17 assists, especially the play of Mason (Sawyer).”
Sawyer dished off seven assists without committing a turnover and scored 14 points. Mark Ogden joined Robbins with solid numbers in the paint – 11 points and 7 rebounds.

Dixie State shot 58 percent in the first half and built a 52-44 lead at the half, despite not hitting from behind the arc (0-6) and falling behind 24-16 eight minutes into the game. Robbins scored 18 points in the first half and led Dixie State’s 36-20 run to cap the first 20 minutes.

Madison Higgins hit his first four shots of the game to finish with a team-high 23 points for the Sunbirds (9-17, 5-13 PacWest). Roger Paul added 21 points while Trevon Clayton had a double-double (15 points, 13 rebounds).

The second half saw Dixie State hit six consecutive shots from 3-point land to extend its halftime lead from eight to 13, 81-68. Thompson nailed two in the first distance run while Sawyer, Robbie Nielson and Collin Woods added long-distance connections. Free throw makes from Ogden and a driving lay-in crested the Dixie State lead at 17 points at the 3:53 mark.

Dixie State outrebounded the Sunbirds 30-24 and recorded 11 steals to just 10 turnovers.

The Red Storm has a chance to secure a share of their fifth PacWest title next Saturday, Feb. 28, when they return home for Senior Day against Point Loma. The Red Storm family will honor Robbins, Thompson, Jordan Rex and Conner Van Brocklin for their contributions over the years in a ceremony prior to the 7:30 p.m. tipoff in the Burns Arena.

Stats: DSU 94, FPU 80

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL
FPU 91, DSU 82

Taylor Mann posted a career-best 34 points but the Dixie State women’s basketball team came up short against a hot-shooting Fresno Pacific team 91-82 on Saturday afternoon.

The Red Storm (8-17, 7-12) shot 45.3 percent for the game but the FPU (6-17, 6-12) shot even better at 55.2 for the game. Chermayne Moore and Kaylah Miller added 13 points apiece. Leslie Tademy recorded a career-best 12 assists. Maynes had eight rebounds and two steals while Moore had three steals. 

Mann’s 34 came on 12 of 26 shooting from the field for her career high. She added eight boards too.

“I am very proud of Taylor and she is a real force to be recognized with,” head coach Jenny Thigpen said. “She did everything I asked of her tonight and I am so proud of her.”

The Red Storm needed all of Mann’s paint points as Fresno Pacific put in 48 points in the paint to DSU’s 54. 

“We missed a lot of easy ones and didn’t take advantage of turnovers the way we should have,” Thigpin said.

At the half, Dixie State trailed just 43-39 but the Red Storm tied it up right out of halftime at 45-45 with 18:12 to go after Moore’s layup.

Fresno Pacific regrouped however, and slowly pushed the lead to double digits throughout the second half. DSU got it back down to single digits inside of a minute but ran out of time to mount a come back.

Dixie State will return home to the Burns Arena for Senior Night, taking on Point Loma at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 28 in the final home game of the year. Miller, Maynes and Haileigh Emerine will all play their final home game as a member of the Red Storm.

Stats: FPU 91, DSU 82

Email: sports@stgnews.com

Twitter: @oldschoolag

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