Kansas City, Mo. – In the home opener of the 2018-19 season, the UMKC men's basketball team lost tonight to Drake University (3-1) by a 66-63 score at Municipal Auditorium. Junior guard Xavier Bishop rattled off his third-straight 20-point effort with 27 points on 10-of-18 shooting.
The Roos had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but a 35-foot shot at the buzzer by Brandon Kissic went wide.
The UMKC defense was stellar limiting Drake, a member of the Missouri Valley Conference, to a season-low 35.2 percent (19-of-54) on the night. A team known for its long-range shooting, Drake also was cold from the 3-point line with a 33.3 percent (9-of-27) clip.
Roos’ head coach Kareem Richardson was happy about his team’s defensive effort.
“I thought our defense was really good at the end,” stated Richardson. “We had a couple lapses there with that 10-point lead and they (Drake) just chipped away at it. We probably played 90% of our possessions really good and 10% not so much in crucial spots for the game.”
The visitors out-scored UMKC 31-18 to end the contest. The Roos held a 45-35 edge with 12:25 remaining on a Brandon Suggs free throw. From there, Drake scored seven-straight points and eventually took the lead for good on a D.J. Wilkins lay-up with four minutes left.
Jordan Giles was the other Roo in double-figures with 11 points. He made all five of his free throw attempts. Three players had at least five rebounds with Brandon McKissic leading the way with a career-tying six boards.
Brady Ellingson was the lone Drake player in double-figures with 13 points and he added six rebounds. Tremell Murphy grabbed a team-high seven rebounds to go with seven points.
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• The Roos host NAIA-member Avila University (Mo.) (0-5) at Municipal Auditorium on Saturday, Nov. 24. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. CT.
• Xavier Bishop recorded his third-straight 20-point effort, and his 27 points was one shy of a career-high. Since averaging 9.3 points in the first three games of the year, Bishop has averaged 27.0 points during the current three-game stretch.
• Jordan Giles finished with 11 points on 3-of-8 shooting. The effort was his second 10-point game in his last three outings.
• Brandon McKissic, who sat out the previous two games with a head injury, came off the bench to score five points and get six boards in 23 minutes.
• The Roos have their home opener win streak snapped at four-straight.
• In the all-time series with Drake since the Roos were a Division I member, UMKC falls to 2-1.
• UMKC posted a season-high in blocks (5) and steals (14).
• The Drake bench out-scored the home team by a 23-12 count