KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The UMKC men’s basketball team will open up the 2018 WAC Men’s Basketball Tournament as the No. 6 seed on Mar. 8 when it takes on No. 3 seed Grand Canyon in the quarterfinals at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.
No. 6 UMKC Kangaroos (10-21, 5-9) vs. No. 3 Grand Canyon Lopes (20-10, 9-5)
Dates & Times: Mar. 8, 2 p.m. CT
Location: Las Vegas, Nev.
Site: Orleans Arena
Live Stats: Live Stats
Live Stream: ESPN3
Live In-Game Updates: @UMKCmbb
The Roos will look to win their WAC Tournament opener for the fourth straight season after knocking-off UTRGV (2015 and 2017) and Utah Valley (2016) the past three seasons.
The Roos are averaging 6.5 steals per game, compared to their opponents at 5.3 per contest. Broderick Robinson leads the team and is second in the WAC with 44 on the year, while Marco Smith has 28, Brandon McKissic has 24 and Xavier Bishop has 23. Overall, the Roos topped the league in turnover margin at +2.32.
This season the Roos have received a majority of their production from underclassmen with freshmen and sophomores accounting for 73.0 percent of their points, 66.1 percent of their assists, 57.5 percent of their steals and 55.9 percent of their rebounds.
At UTRGV, Robinson led the Roos in the game, finishing with 18 points, nine rebounds, three assists, a block and a steal, while McKissic added 14 points, five rebounds and two steals. Smith was the third Roo in double figures, finishing with 21 points, three rebounds, two steals and an assist, while Bishop ended the game with 11 points, five assists and three rebounds and Jordan Giles tallied 10 points, three rebounds and two steals. As a team, UMKC shot 91.7 percent (11-12) from the free throw line and outrebounded the Vaqueros 43-35. Defensively, UMKC forced 18 UTRGV turnovers and limited them to just 30.8 percent shooting from the field and 28.6 percent from three-point range. The 24-point margin is the squad’s largest over a Division I opponent this season and the largest margin of victory over a WAC opponent since beating Seattle U 102-72 on Feb. 11, 2017 and the largest road WAC win since an 82-53 win at Chicago State on Mar. 5, 2016.
In the contest with the Wolverines, Robinson tallied his second double-double of the season, pulling down a career-best 11 rebounds to go with 17 points. Giles led all scorers with 23 points. Against Seattle U, Giles had his first career double-double, finishing with 18 points and 10 rebounds to lead the team.
In UMKC’s 62-59 conference victory over CSU Bakersfield on Jan. 18, sophomore Bishop drained his first college career game-winning 3-pointer to give the Roos their first WAC win.
UMKC overcame a 16-point deficit for a 79-77 victory at USC Upstate on Jan. 2, led by a 21-point game from Isaiah Ross and 20-point performance from Robinson. It marked the third time in four outings that Ross tabulated at least 20 points, while it was Robinson’s third 20-point game of the season.
In the Roos game at Incarnate Word on Dec. 16, UMKC blocked 10 shots as a team - just one shy of the program record of 11 that was set against Nicholls State in 1991.
In UMKC’s 65-55 win at UT Martin on Nov. 26, Ross became the first Roo since standout LaVell Boyd against South Dakota in 2015 to connect on 10-plus field goals in a single game.
– UMKC –