North Coast men’s basketball teams will dive into the
league portion of the schedule this week with 10 games on the
slate, highlighted by Wooster (0-0, 3-1) hosting Ohio Wesleyan
(1-0, 5-0) on Wednesday and Denison (0-0, 4-1) traveling to Ohio
Wesleyan on Saturday. Through the first two-and-a-half weeks of the
season, eight of the league’s 10 teams hold an overall record
of .500 or better, which includes three unbeaten teams in Ohio
Wesleyan, DePauw (0-0, 4-0) and Hiram (0-0, 5-0).
ALLEGHENY went 0-2 in non-conference action last week, falling to Carnegie Mellon, 72-53, and PSU-Behrend, 63-51. Junior forward Brandon Smith (Gahanna, OH/Lincoln) led the Gators with 14 points against CMU, while junior forward Chris Milon (Novi, MI/Novi) led the squad with 11 rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots against PSU-Behrend.
DENISON is off to its best start since the 1996-97 season at 4-1 after compiling a 2-1 record last week. The Big Red picked up wins over two previous unbeaten teams in Case, 87-74, and Beloit, 96-95, and fell to Bethany by a 61-56 margin. Sophomore guard David Meurer (Granville, OH/Newark Catholic) reached career-highs in all three major statistical categories last week, scoring 28 points against Case, pulling down eight rebounds against Bethany and dishing out 13 assists against Beloit. In the three games combined, Meurer totaled 54 points (18.0 ppg), 14 rebounds (4.7 rpg), 20 assists (6.6 apg) and seven steals (2.3 spg).
DEPAUW, ranked 22nd in the most recent D3hoops.com Top 25, topped Rose-Hulman, 77-58, in its only action last week. Senior center Tommy Fernitz (Northbrook, IL/Glenbrook North) posted his third-straight double-double in the win with 12 points and 13 rebounds.
HIRAM is off to its best start since the 1972-73 season at 5-0 after picking up wins last week over Geneva, 75-62, and PSU-Altoona, 54-42. Sophomore Kyle Deckerd (Louisville, OH./Canton South) scored a game-high 16 in the win over Geneva, while sophomore Jeremiah Thomas (Cleveland, OH/John Hay) tallied career-highs in points (16) and rebounds (8) in the win over PSU-Altoona.
KENYON was idle last week and returns to action on Wednesday by hosting Oberlin at 7:30 p.m.
OBERLIN knocked off Earlham, 53-42, in its only action last week. Sophomore guard Jack Poyle (Avon, OH/Avon) led the Yeomen with 14 points, while junior center Randy Ollie (Evanston, IL/Evanston) also added 12 points and eight rebounds in the 11-point win.
OHIO WESLEYAN, ranked 21st in the most recent D3hoops.com Top 25, improved to 5-0 overall after picking up two wins last week over Capital, 85-67, and Defiance, 77-63. Junior post Claude Gray (Avon, OH/Avon) led the Battling Bishops on the week with 33 points (16.5 ppg) and 12 rebounds (6.0 rpg), after shooting 48 percent (10-of-21) from the field, 56 percent (5-of-9) from three-point range and 89 percent (8-of-9) from the free throw line
WABASH won its home opener over North Central (MN), 87-68, on Tuesday, but closed out the week with a 57-47 home loss against Rose-Hulman on Sunday. In the win over North Central, sophomore guard Kyle Aiton (Newburgh, IN/Castle) scored a game-high 23 points, while sophomore forward Daniel Scofield (Indianapolis, IN/Lawrence North) added his first double-double of the season with 12 points and 13 rebounds.
WITTENBERG picked up its first victory of the season on Tuesday with a 70-46 road win at Otterbein. The Tigers, who opened the game on a 17-0 run, were led by sophomore point guard Cody Phillippi (Xenia, OH/Xenia), who scored 16 points after shooting 5-of-7 from the field, 4-of-6 from beyond the arc and 2-of-2 from the free throw line.
WOOSTER, ranked fifth in the most recent D3hoops.com Top 25, suffered its first loss of the season on Saturday at Hanover by a 70-57 margin. In the last four seasons combined, the Fighting Scots are 1-6 in games played in the state of Indiana. Freshman guard Spencer Williams (Orange Village, OH/Orange) paced the Scots in the loss with 13 points, two rebounds and two assists.