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All-Area 2014: Delton tabbed top offensive player -12/21/2014, 5:35 PM

All-Area 2014: Green a load on defense for Norton -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

All-Area 2014: Oberle tabbed top coach -12/21/2014, 6:00 PM

Top stories 2014: Hays High, TMP volleyball have breakthrough -12/21/2014, 5:56 PM

Monarch boys pick up second win -- girls roll -12/21/2014, 5:34 PM

2014 HDN All-Area Super 11 capsules -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

MCL Round Robin wraps up at WaKeeney -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

Jayhawks pull away from Lafayette, win 96-69 -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

HHS wrestling competes at Ellsworth -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

Tiger women top Bearcats; men fall in overtime -12/21/2014, 9:57 PM

Eagles' playoff hopes hurt after loss to Redskins -12/21/2014, 9:56 PM

Wildcats back on track, beat Texas A&M -12/21/2014, 9:50 PM

Hays High's Dale continues winning ways -12/19/2014, 10:57 AM

Page continues hot streak for Tiger wrestling -12/19/2014, 10:16 AM

KSU revs interest in Ojeleye -12/19/2014, 10:15 AM

Top stories 2014: Tebo gets his gold -12/19/2014, 10:26 AM

KU's Beaty draws from Texas roots -12/18/2014, 11:32 AM

KSU expects more than 10,000 fans -12/18/2014, 11:32 AM

Indians swimmers compete at Manhattan -12/18/2014, 11:32 AM

Steelers bring a new identity into crucial game against Chiefs -12/18/2014, 11:30 AM

Indians earn sweep before holiday break -12/17/2014, 10:20 AM

Top stories 2014: FHSU football continues steady climb -12/17/2014, 10:20 AM

Lehman's triple-double leads FHSU to eighth straight win -12/17/2014, 10:20 AM

Dome hits game-winner for Victoria boys; TMP girls roll -12/17/2014, 10:19 AM

Shockers rally from 11 down to beat Alabama -12/17/2014, 10:19 AM

Royals land Rios -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

KU, Mizzou express interest in Ojeleye -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

Kansas State DT Clinkscales faces additional charge -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

No WR touchdowns? No problem -12/16/2014, 9:27 AM

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Prep basketball

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Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Tiger men in key road swing

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Tiger men in key road swing

Published on -1/16/2014, 10:19 AM

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By CONOR NICHOLL

cnicholl@dailynews.net

Last season, the Fort Hays State University men's basketball team won the regular-season conference championship by mainly playing six Tigers. Four of them averaged at least 12.8 points per contest while Carson Konrade chipped in 9.1 points per contest. Three players averaged at least 32 minutes a game.

This winter, FHSU has received some strong bench support, including back-to-back big games from senior forward Andrew Victoria two weeks ago on a road swing. Last Saturday, the Tigers defeated Lincoln (Mo.) University 88-85. The five starters -- senior forward Dwayne Brunson, sophomore point guard Craig Nicholson, Konrade, sophomore forward Jake Stoppel and junior Tom Gabric -- combined for all but 37 minutes. The bench tallied 11 points and four rebounds.

"We need to do a better job with our bench," coach Mark Johnson said. "Our bench needs to give us more. They need to play with more confidence. I thought Andrew really had a great stretch.

"(Saturday), he struggled when he got out there," Johnson added. "I think it might have been a little tough of a matchup with him with those guys, because they can pop and shoot the ball fairly well. We need more out of our bench. We can't keep riding our starters this many minutes all year long."

Today and Saturday, FHSU (12-3, 4-3 MIAA) has a critical two-game road stretch against University of Central Oklahoma and Northeastern State University. UCO stands at 10-4, 4-3 and NEOSU is 10-4, 5-2 MIAA. Northeastern's Bryton Hobbs leads the conference with 23.5 points per contest, while UCO's Josh Gibbs is at 22.1 points and 12.8 rebounds, fourth best nationally. Start time is 7:30 p.m. today and 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

"It goes both ways," Johnson said. "I need to have more confidence in them and they need to play with more confidence."

The starters delivered big games Saturday. Nicholson finished with 27 points and eight assists and tied the school record with 19 made free throws. Gabric set a career high with 19 points.

"Coach is always like, 'Tom, be aggressive, play hard,' " Gabric said. "That's what I did, and that's what gets me going."

The Tigers shot 87.5 percent from the foul line for the game and is at 80.8 for the season. Last year, FHSU set the school record with a 76.7 free throw percentage. Johnson said he hasn't changed anything with free throws.

"Either you have good foul shooters or you don't," Johnson said. "You want to have a good free throw shooting team, recruit good free throw shooters. Same thing with 3-point shooters. You want to have a good 3-point shooting team, recruit good 3-point shooters. Our guys shoot the free throws well. You hope that continues."

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