NCAC men’s basketball teams concluded the 2013 portion of the league schedule last week with Wooster (4-0, 7-0) and Wittenberg (4-0, 7-1) sitting atop the standings as we head into the holiday break. There are seven non-conference games on the slate this week, highlighted by Wooster traveling to Phoenix, Arizona, for a pair of games against Westmont and Arizona Christian, Dec. 16-17, respectively.
ALLEGHENY fell against Kenyon, 80-75, in its only game last week. Senior John O’Donnell (McDonald, PA/West Allegheny) tied a school record with seven three-pointers, en route to a career-high 21 points, while classmate Clark Tritto (Buffalo, NY/City Honors) scored 17 points after shooting 7-of-7 from the field.
DENISON rallied from a 17-point first-half deficit to knock off Capital, 87-82, on Thursday, before dropping a 97-69 decision against No. 13 Wittenberg on Saturday. Senior Alex Longi (Cincinnati, OH/St. Xavier) finished the week with 39 points, including a career-high 26 in the loss against Wittenberg, after shooting 68 percent (15-of-22) from the field, 67 percent (2-of-3) from beyond the arc and 58 percent (7-of-12) from the free throw line.
DEPAUW trailed Rose-Hulman by 19 points at halftime and clawed back into the contest in the second half, but in the end the Engineers prevailed by a 64-61 margin. Senior guard Michael Wilkison (Cincinnati, OH/Anderson) led the Tigers with 15 points, while junior forward Bob Dillon (Indianapolis, IN/Brebeuf) grabbed a game-high seven rebounds.
HIRAM suffered a heartbreaking 69-67 overtime loss against Ohio Wesleyan in its only action last week. Senior guard Aaron Stefanov (Stow, OH/Stow Munroe-Falls) scored a game-high 20 points and knocked down four three-point buckets in the narrow two-point loss.
KENYON extended its winning streak to four games and pushed its overall record past the .500 mark (5-4) with two home wins last week against Allegheny, 80-75, and Albion, 76-71. Senior Brian Lebowitz (New York, NY/Riverdale) scored a season-high 22 points against Allegheny and than added a 13-point effort against Albion. In addition to his 35 combined points on the week, Lebowitz weekly total included 12 rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots.
OBERLIN split a pair of non-NCAC games last week, first falling at Case, 78-68, on Monday, before topping Grove City, 63-50, on Wednesday. In the win over the Wolverines, senior Geoff Simpson (Simsbury, CT/Simsbury) recorded his second double-double of the season with 16 points and 11 rebounds. The Yeomen will now be idle until January 4th when they travel to Cairn University.
OHIO WESLEYAN opened the week with a 70-59 non-conference win against Anderson, before topping Hiram, 69-67, in overtime on Saturday. Senior wing Dre White (Lima, OH/Bath) scored a career-high 20 points and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds against Anderson, and then played a vital role in the Bishops’ two-point win over Hiram. He finished the game against the Terriers with 10 points, eight rebounds and four assists, but more importantly, he knocked down a pair of buckets in the final minute of regulation to help OWU erase a six-point deficit and send the game into overtime.
WABASH trailed No. 2 Wooster by one, 21-20 at halftime, but the Fighting Scots outscored the Little Giants 33-21 in the second half to defeat Wabash by a 54-41 margin. Freshman guard Kyle Aiton (Newburgh, IN/Castle) was the Little Giants’ top scorer in the loss with 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc.
WITTENBERG, ranked 13th on the D3hoops.com Top 25, picked up a 97-69 victory over Denison in its only action last week. The Tigers posted their best shooting performance since February of 2001 as the team connected on 37-of-56 field goal attempts for a 66.1 shooting percentage. Senior Scott Masin (New Carlisle, OH/Bethel) led the team with 21 points, while senior Zack Leahy (Rossford, OH/Rossford) contributed 16 points and a career-high nine assists in the victory.
WOOSTER, ranked second on the D3hoops.com Top 25, topped Wabash, 54-41, in its only action last night. Freshman forward Dan Fanelly (Uniontown, OH/Green) continued his impressive rookie campaign by scoring 15 points for the third consecutive game. With the Fighting Scots holding a slight 21-20 halftime lead, Fanelly scored all nine points during a 9-2 run to help the Scots pull away from the Little Giants in the second half.