ST. GEORGE, Utah – Senior guard McKay Massey made nine of 12 shots for 22 points to spark the Dixie State College basketball team to a 77-65 win over Colorado Mesa in the championship game of the DSC Classic on Saturday inside the Burns Arena.
The career night for Massey continued with eight assists, six coming in the second half when Storm pulled away from the Mavericks after the game was knotted at the half. Dixie State improved to 2-0 on the year, while the Mavs fell to 1-1.
“He (Massey) did a good job tonight of letting the game come to him and he took really good shots,” DSC head coach Jon Judkins said.
Colorado Mesa took an early 9-2 lead behind a hot start from Mike Melillo (18 points, nine rebounds). Over the next 4:49, Dixie State used an 11-4 run to even the game at 13-13. Neither team built a substantial lead and a stickback dunk by Zach Robbins kept the game tied at the break, 36-36.
Physical and close battles have been the trademark of previous battles between DSC and Colorado Mesa. Saturday’s see-saw battle saw eight ties and 11 lead changes until Massey and DSC took over at the 11:43 mark in the second half. Jumpers from DeQuan Thompson and Robbins began a 14-0 defining run that saw Massey get a lay-in and nail a pail of three-pointer. Kimball Payne knocked in a shot to close the run with a DSC 65-53 lead.
Payne had 10 points and joined Massey by posting a career-high with nine dimes.
The Mavs never got the Dixie State lead under 10. Payne, Thompson and Brandon Simister nailed free throws down the stretch.
Dixie State plays its first road game of the year Friday against the Yellowjackets of Montana State-Billings. Tip from Alterowitz Gymnasium is set for 7 p.m.
John Potter is the "Voice of the Red Storm" and an athletic media relation assistant at Dixie State College. Contact him at Potter@dixie.edu.
Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company