The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor men’s basketball team dominated the second half as the Cru hammered Hardin-Simmons 105-69 Thursday night in Belton. UMHB snaps a two-game losing streak and improves to 13-3 overall and 4-3 in American Southwest Conference play with the victory. The loss drops the Cowboys to 9-7 overall and 4-3 in the ASC on the year.


The two teams were tied seven times and traded the lead eight times in a back-and-forth first half. After leading by six in the early going, UMHB held a 42-38 edge at halftime. Hardin-Simmons closed to 44-43 early in the second half only to see the Cru explode for a 27-7 run to take the lead out to 21 at 71-50. The Cru lead would grow to as many as 42 before UMHB made wholesale changes. The Cru shot 63 percent from the field in the second half while holding the Cowboys to 26 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes of action and outscored HSU 63-31 in the second half.


Brian Long led UMHB with 24 points on 9-12 shooting. Sam Moore added 23 points and six assists. Demarius Cress also had six assists to go with 19 points, LaKendric Hyson scored 14 and Byrale Carter added 13 points and a game-high nine rebounds. UMHB shot 56 percent for the game as a team and went 11-26 from beyond the arc. The Cru also hit 22-24 free-throws in the win.


Steven Quinn was the only player to reach double figures for Hardin-Simmons, finishing with 12 points. Three players scored eight points apiece, including Joe Hoeup, who also grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. The Cowboys shot just 34 percent from the field and were 7-25 from beyond the arc. HSU also hit just 12-22 from the stripe in the loss.


The Cru will host McMurry University for a 3 pm tip-off on Saturday before playing the next five games on the road. UMHB will then return home to close out the regular season with three straight home games in February.