ST. JOSEPH, Mo.
Northwest's national title defense started off on the right foot on Friday afternoon as the Bearcats ran past the Upper Iowa Peacocks 89-65.
The Cats led 41-31 at the half time break, but outscored the Peacocks 48-34 in the second half.
Seniors Justin Pitts (30 points) and Chris-Ebou Ndow (20 points) combined for 50 points in the contest. Fellow senior Brett Dougherty added 13 points.
An impressive victory over a tough opponent to start the season, and head coach Ben McCollum was pleased with his newcomers in Friday's contest, but wants more from his team.
"We have a lot of newcomers that are playing considerable amount of minutes, so they're trying to figure out how to compete at this level," McCollum said. "They're trying to figure out what we do offensively, how I'm going to coach in games, that was part of that slow start and even the second half was fairly slow. I thought we pulled away. We got enough stops defensively. We kind of amped up defensively, but we have a very long ways to go."
Northwest will play Northern State on Sunday afternoon in the final day of the 26th Annual Hillyard Tip-off Classic.