JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri – Northwest Missouri State junior Ryan Hawkins scored 43 points and carried the No. 1-ranked Bearcats to an 87-53 road win over the Lincoln Blue Tigers at Jason Gym.
Northwest moved to 8-0 on the season, 1-0 in MIAA play, and extended its win streak to 46 in a row. Lincoln fell to 2-5 overall and 0-1 in MIAA play.
Hawkins tied for the second-most points scored ever by a Bearcat with his 43-point performance. Hawkins went 14-of-19 from the field and was 11-of-12 at the free throw line. Hawkins sank 4-of-7 from three-point range. He also added a team-best three steals. Hawkins scored 26 first-half points and built the Bearcats a 42-25 lead at the break at Lincoln.
The Bearcats shot 54.3 percent from the floor and buried 28-of-31 at the free throw line. Lincoln was held to 39.3 percent from the field and made only 5-of-8 free throws.
Diego Bernard was the only other Bearcat to reach double-figure scoring with 17 points. Bernard led all players with nine rebounds.
Northwest will travel to Warrensburg, Missouri, to take on the Central Missouri Mules on Saturday. Tip is set for 3 p.m. following the women's game.
NOTES: Northwest has won 24 straight MIAA games and 30 in a row against all MIAA foes if postseason tournament games are included ... Northwest has won 16 consecutive road contests to tie Queens (N.C.) for the longest active road win streak in all NCAA divisions ... it's the second 40-plus scoring game this season for Hawkins after he poured in 44 points vs. Southern Nazarene (Nov. 2) to set the Northwest single-game scoring record ... his 43-point performance tonight ties him with Ed Maxwell for the second-most points scored in a single-game by a Bearcat men's basketball player ... Hawkins one of three players in all NCAA divisions to score 40+ in two games this season ... Marquette's Markus Howard (40 vs. Davidson; 51 vs. Southern California, Wesley's Brian Cameron (43 vs. Manhattanville; 42 vs. SUNY Oneonta) are the other two ... Hawkins is the only NCAA Division II player with two 40-plus scoring games this season ... Northwest has shot 54.3 percent or better in six of its eight games.
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