Posted: Thursday, 21 February 2013 10:47PM

Hall, Panthers light up William Jewell

Alex Hall scored 28 points and hit six more 3-pointers to lead four Panthers in double-figures and No. 11 Drury to a 97-70 victory over William Jewell and clinch the outright Great Lakes Valley Conference West Division title on Senior Night Thursday night at the O'Reilly Family Event Center.

All three Panther seniors had noteworthy efforts in their final regular season games at The O' as Drury (20-4, 14-2 in the GLVC) won 20 games for the seventh time in Coach Steve Hesser's nine seasons at the helm.


Teddy Simniok had 16 points and shared rebounding honors with Ian Carter and Drake Patterson with six each and Brandon Lockhart added 15 points, five rebounds and five assists for a DU team that shot 59 percent from the field for the game (38 of 64) and matched their season low with seven turnovers.

It also marked a 12th consecutive victory for these Panthers, as they protected their newly-established No. 1 ranking in the NCAA-II Midwest Region by winning for the 19th time in their last 20 games at The O' - and improving to 13-0 all-time in February in the three years since the building was constructed.

It was also a return to where he belongs for Hesser, who missed last Saturday's game at Illinois-Springfield while hospitalized in Quincy, Ill., over the weekend with pneumonia.

"We are very appreciative of these people coming out tonight to honor our three seniors," Hesser said of a crowd of  1,893 on a chilly, icy Springfield night. "With the weather tthe way it was, there were a lot of things they could have done tonight instead, but they came out to watch us play basketball.

"We really defended, moved the basketball and shared the basketball well, and I'm proud of them."

This one was over fairly early, as the Panthers raced to a 51-29 halftime advantage behind 23 first-half points (including five treys) from Hall and 11 from Simniok. Hall's six 3-pointers pushes his career total to 345, just six behind Matt Miller's school record of 351.

Hall's 28-point night also moved him into fifth place on the all-time DU scoring charts with 1,927 points, passing former Panther greats Collins Harris (1,910) and James Bone (1,920) on this evening. Hall needs nine points to pass another DU Hall of Famer, Nate Quinn (1,935) for fourth place.

"He got off to one of those Alex Hall starts," Hesser said. "And Teddy really came forward there in the first half and just did a solid job."

Drury would lead by as much as 35 points (with 8:55 remaining) en route to the season sweep of the Cardinals (11-13, 7-9).

Cameron Adams also had 15 points in 19 minutes off the bench for the Panthers, who will visit Rockhurst Saturday for a 5:15 p.m. tipoff in Kansas City.
William Jewell 71, Drury women 64
William Jewell got 26 points from Chelsea Meeks and held off a late Drury charge for a 71-64 victory over the Lady Panthers in Great Lakes Valley Conference play Thursday night at the O'Reilly Family Event Center.

The Cardinals improved to 14-9 overall and 8-7 in the GLVC, while Drury - losing for just the second time in its last six games - dropped to 12-12 and 6-10 on Senior Night for Katie Pritchard, Abby Bracker and Marla Munsen.


Meeks, whose tip-in with one second remaining downed the Lady Panthers 59-57 in Liberty late last month, was a nemesis again on Thursday, doing much of her damage at the free-throw line (12 of 13).  Jessie Wheeler had 13 points off the bench and Katlyn Wood added 12 points and 10 rebounds for a Jewell team that outrebounded the Lady Panthers 37-30 after getting outrebounded 50-25 in the first meeting between the two.

Bethanie Funderburk had 11 points, while Pritchard and Emilie Gray added 10 points each for Drury, which commmitted 27 turnovers. Wheeler had nine of Jewell's 19 steals in the contest.

Gray had seven rebounds for the Lady Panthers, who trailed 35-26 at the half. Drury cut the Jewell advantage to five (50-45) with six minutes left after 3-pointers by Katie Harold and Funderburk, but the Cardinals scored the next six points and Drury never got closer than seven the rest of the way.

The Lady Panthers return to action Saturday in Kansas City, taking on Rockhurst in a 3 p.m. GLVC tipoff.

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