Norfolk, Nebraska -- On a night when 3-point shooting was on display for both teams, IHCC's Tomas Woldetensae stood out, leading No. 12-ranked Indian Hills to a 101-79 conference road victory at Northeast (Neb.).
The two squads combined to make 13 threes -- Woldetensae tying his career high with seven goals from behind the arc, while the Hawks' Emmette Page drilled five. Woldetensae had his 7th game this season with at least five 3-pointers and upped his season total to 84 in a year in which he has hit at least one three in all 23 games he has played.
The Warriors tallied the final 10 points of the first half to go on top by nine at intermission, then ran off seven straight points to open the second half and never led by fewer than 12 points after that.
IHCC shot 57 percent for the game and a blistering 66 percent in the second period (23-of-35). Eleven of the 12 Warriors who played had at least one field goal in the final half and the one who didn't, Billy Thomas, helped the cause with his play off the bench in the first 20 minutes, draining a pair of threes immediately after entering the game.
Woldetensae's third early three began a quick 10-2 first-half run that gave Indian Hills a 24-15 lead. Caleb Rihanek made two clutch threes later in the half for Northeast. The first snapped a 27-all tie, and the second provided the Hawks' final lead of the night, 35-34. Thomas went to the foul line for the first free throws for either team, with three minutes remaining in the opening period and made both tries for a 36-35 IHCC advantage. JD Muila followed with a field goal, Torrey Patton had another one, Muila drained a free throw and Woldetensae polished off the half with his 4th 3-pointer for a nine-point halftime margin.
Tyler Chisom, scoreless in the first half, scored on a 3-point play and another bucket to get the final period started and Iziah James made one as well to push the Indian Hills lead to 16. From there, the Warriors were never in any trouble, leading by as many as 25 points with 2 1/2 minutes to play.
Anthony Bratton's dunk in the final minute pushed the point total over 100, the 7th time this season IHCC has put at least 100 points on the board.
Page's 21 points paced NCC. Rihanek added 14.
Fourteen of the Hawks' 30 field goals were threes. Woldetensae drilled 7-of-11 from distance.
Muila pumped in 15 points and James 11 for the Warriors, who took their 6th consecutive conference win without a loss this year and their 20th in a row dating back to 2016. Indian Hills has a one-game lead over Southeastern in the league standings with the two teams scheduled to meet for a second time on Feb. 16.
Before then, the Warriors will play two non-conference home games: Saturday against a red-hot Moberly (Mo.) team that's won 13 in a row since losing to IHCC in early December, and Feb. 13 vs. North Central Missouri.
INDIAN HILLS 101, NORTHEAST 79
INDIAN HILLS (21-4, 6-0)
Lance Singh 2 0-1 4, Billy Thomas 2 2-3 8, Iziah James 4 2-2 11, Nick Wagner 3 0-0 7, Tyon Grant-Foster 1 0-0 3, Tomas Woldetensae 9 0-1 25, Josh Nicholas 1 0-0 2, Tajim Smith 1 0-0 2, JD Muila 6 3-4 15, Anthony Bratton 4 0-0 8, Tyler Chisom 4 1-1 9, Torrey Patton 3 0-0 7 Team 40 8-12 101
NORTHEAST (12-13, 1-5)
Moses Byekwaso 2 0- 1 5, Emmette Page 7 2-2 21, Joel Ufele 4 1-2 9, Daniel Akuei 3 2-2 8, Ben Moxness 2 0-0 6, Luke Rollman 2 0-2 4, Junior Oscar 3 0-0 6, Caleb Rihanek 5 0-0 14, Zack James 2 0-0 6 Team 30 5-9 79
Halftime score: Indian Hills 44, Northeast 35; Three-point field goals: IHCC 13 (Woldetensae 7, Thomas 2, James 1, Wagner 1, Grant-Foster 1, Patton 1), NCC 14 (Page 5, Rihanek 4, Moxness 2, James 2, Byekwaso 1)