Nationally-ranked Wittenberg now stands alone at the top of the North Coast men’s basketball standings with a perfect 6-0 record against league foes, while Ohio Wesleyan sits in second at 5-1 and Denison, Hiram and Wooster are tied for third at 4-2 each. There are 10 total league games on the schedule this week, led by Ohio Wesleyan hosting Hiram on Wednesday and Wittenberg traveling to Wooster on Saturday.
ALLEGHENY was unable to overcome a hot-shooting Denison squad as the Gators dropped a 97-72 decision against the Big Red on Saturday. Jordan Rawls (Pittsburgh, PA/Taylor Allderdice) continued his strong sophomore season with seven rebounds and a team-high 27 points against DU.
DENISON went 1-1 in league action last week, falling to No. 9 Ohio Wesleyan, 89-70, on Wednesday, before defeating Allegheny by a 97-72 margin on Saturday. Sophomore guard Jack Coulter (San Francisco, CA/St. Ignatius) had a record-breaking performance against the Gators with a career-high 32 points on 10-of-19 shooting from three-point range. The 10 three-point buckets broke both DU’s program record and the arena record at Allegheny’s David V. Wise Center, while also tying the NCAC mark achieved twice before by Earlham’s Travis Brett against DePauw in 2002 and OWU’s Nick Felhaber against Oberlin in 2015.
DEPAUW picked up a pair of wins last week against Boyce, 103-57, and Kenyon, 54-39. In the win over Boyce, the Tigers dished out 30 assists in a game for the first time since 1988, while the 39 points allowed against Kenyon was the best defensive effort by a DPU squad since holding Kenyon to 37 points in a 53-37 win on January 10, 2015. Senior guard David Vogel (Bluffton, IN/Norwell) paced the Tigers on the week with 30 total points after shooting 11-of-22 from the field and knocking down 8-of-16 three-point attempts, while freshman forward Josh Hall (Bloomington, IN/South) posted career highs of 19 points and eight rebounds in the win over Boyce.
HIRAM suffered an 81-61 setback against No. 17 Wittenberg in its only action last week. Senior Kelvin Jones (Sheffield Lake, OH/Brookside) led the Terriers in scoring against the Tigers with 17 points, while senior Isaiah Matthews (Orlando, FL/Eastridge) and freshman Jalen Kirksey (Massillon, OH/Washington) shared the team lead on the glass with seven rebounds each.
KENYON dropped a pair of league contests last week against No. 17 Wittenberg, 87-67, and DePauw, 54-39. Junior guard Matt Shifrin (Wilton, CT/Wilton) led the Lords against Wittenberg with 22 points on 9-of-14 shooting from the field, while sophomore Ben Stern (Arlington, VA/Flint Hill) was the lone Lord in double figures against DePauw with a 14 total points.
OBERLIN turned in a 1-1 record last week, dropping a 63-60 non-conference decision against Case, before bouncing back with a 66-65 overtime victory over Wabash for the Yeomen’s first conference win of the season. Junior guard Eli Silverman-Lloyd (Culver City, CA/Winward) matched a season-high with nine made field goals in the win over Wabash en route to scoring a team-high 21 points and hitting double figures in the scoring column for the eighth game in a row.
OHIO WESLEYAN, ranked ninth in the NABC/D3hoops.com Top-25, split a pair of home games last week, first topping Denison, 89-70, on Wednesday, before dropping a heartbreaking 73-70 decision against Wooster on Saturday. Senior guard Seth Clark (Lewis Center, OH/Olentangy) scored a game-high 30 points against the Big Red on 10-of-19 shooting from the field, while classmate Nate Axelrod (Dublin, OH/Coffman) also hit the 30-point mark in the three-point loss against the Scots.
WABASH snapped Illinois Tech’s 15-game home win streak on Wednesday night with a 66-61 victory in Chicago; however, the Little Giants momentum was halted on Saturday in a narrow 66-65 overtime loss against Oberlin. Freshman guard Connor Rotterman (Fishers, IN/Hamilton Southeastern) led the Little Giants with 17 points off the bench in the win over Illinois Tech, while sophomore forward Alex Eberhard (Evansville, IN/Memorial) added 16 points and eight rebounds in the win, which included sinking a pair of game-clinching free throws in the final seconds.
WITTENBERG, ranked 17th in the NABC/D3hoops.com Top-25, continued its record-breaking start to the season with a pair of 20-point victories last week against Kenyon, 87-67, and Hiram, 81-61. At 13-0 overall, the Tigers are now one just of four remaining undefeated teams left in Div. III, joining York (PA) (13-0), Whitman (WA) (13-0) and Hamilton (NY) (12-0). Junior post Chad Roy (Toledo, OH/Holland Springfield) opened the week by posting his fourth double-double of the season with 13 points and 11 rebounds against Kenyon, before adding 16 points and five more boards in the win over Hiram. In the two games combined, Roy shot 11-of-17 from the field and 6-of-9 from the free throw line.
WOOSTER leaned heavily on its defense in a 73-70 win at No. 9 Ohio Wesleyan on Saturday as the Scots held the Bishops to 70 or fewer points for just the second time this season. In fact, the Scots held OWU to just 26 points in the first half, marking the third-straight game between the two squads that the Bishops have scored less than 30 points in the first half. Wooster also held a dominating 51-30 edge in the rebounding column, which included a 21-4 on the offensive end. Individually, sophomore guard Danyon Hempy (Waldo, OH/River Valley) led the Scots with 16 points against OWU, while senior forward Alex Baptiste (Allonees, France/Wasatch Acad. (UT)) posted a game-high 11 rebounds.