The Student News Site of University of Nebraska at Kearney

The Antelope

The Antelope

The Antelope

New look men’s team ready to begin season

UNK freshman D’Aundre Samuels tries to break free from a Southern Nazarene defender. Photo by Jon Willis / Antelope Staff

After posting the worst record under coach Kevin Lofton throughout his time at UNK a season ago, eight new faces hope to turn the tide for the Loper men’s basketball season in the 2023-2024 campaign. 

The Lopers brought in five transfers and three freshmen to replace the departures from last season, including leading scorer Darrian Nebeker, who graduated.. 

The leading returner for UNK is 6-foot-3 junior guard Sean Evans who averaged 14 points and four rebounds last season for the Lopers.

UNK also brought in a trio of freshmen, expected to make a big impact this season. 6-4 D’Aundre Samuels was the 2023 Colorado Gatorade player of the year who averaged 22 points and eight rebounds his senior year at Denver East High School, and 6-2 Bryson Goldsmith scored over 1,000 points in his high school career at Chapin High School in El Paso, Texas. Clayton Moore, a 6-4 guard/forward from Mullen, will redshirt this season. 

“I just think back to when I first learned how to swim, they threw me in the deep end and said figure it out,” Lofton said. “It’s not quite that brutal, but you gotta put them out there and the only way they will learn is by actually getting out there and doing it.” 

The transfers UNK brought in include Remington Rofer, MiraCosta College (California), Miguel Robles, Chaffey College (California), Damiri Lindo, Holy Names University (California), Donovan Short, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and Taden King North Idaho College. 

Short, a 6-10 center at a D1 college, had a highlight dunk that appeared on a Sports Center reel. King averaged 16 points last season with North Idaho, earning all region honors. 

After the 5-23 record, including a 3-19 conference record from last season, the Lopers were picked to finish last in both the coaches and media poll. 

UNK got the season started Nov. 10 against preseason nationally ranked Southern Nazarene on the road, and lost on a last second jump shot. Both Lindo and Short, two anticipated starters for the Lopers, were not able to play in the season opener. 

 Robles paced the way for UNK, with 24 points in his Loper debut on 8-12 shooting. Returning forward Sean Murphy finished with 18 points and nine rebounds as well. Southern Nazarene shot 21 more free throws than the Lopers, and shot 26 in the second half to help propel them to a win. 

“Health is going to be a big part of it,” Lofton said. “That was the first Division II game for a lot of the guys on our roster, and you got a lot of sad faces in the locker room, but hopefully that will drive us here in the next week of practice.”

The 0-1 Lopers will have their first home game Nov. 18 against Chadron State at 4 p.m. 

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Antelope

Your donation will support the student journalists of University of Nebraska at Kearney . Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Jon Willis, Reporter
Donate to The Antelope

Comments (0)

All The Antelope Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *