WC uses second half to filet Muskies
January 24, 2013
Junior Malcolm Heard II (#20) and sophomore Dwight Johnson combined for 35 points in Wilmington's win over Muskingum. (Wilmington photo/John Swartzel)
The Wilmington College men’s basketball team shot 69 percent in the second half en route to keeping Muskingum winless in the Ohio Athletic Conference, beating the Muskies, 93-69, Wednesday at the Fred Raizk Arena in Hermann Court.
With the hot shooting, the Fightin’ Quakers rolled up 55 points in the second half. It was the most points scored in any half this season for Wilmington. The 93 points were the most scored in regulation this season, eclipsing the previous high of 87 reached Saturday against Marietta. Wilmington tallied 108 in the double overtime win over Mount Union on January 12.
“I think offensively, coming into the game, we really worked on playing up-tempo,” said head coach K.C. Hunt. “We want to play faster and use our players in space, and I thought we did a good job of sharing the basketball. I thought we had really good flow. We made extra passes, and got a lot of easy baskets at the rim. And fortunately we knocked down some open three’s and that makes for some good basketball.”
As beautiful as the second 20 minutes were, the first 20 could have been characterized as that ugly.
“I didn’t think we competed at the level we needed to compete to win an OAC game,” said Hunt. “We challenged their manhood a little bit to be competitive in the second half, and I think we answered the challenge.”
Wilmington came out of the locker room to score the first 14 points and with scoring the final five points of the first half – the run was officially 19-0. The spurt transformed a two-point deficit into a 17-point lead.
Until the Fightin’ Quakers came to live, thanks to some choice words at halftime, the outcome hung in the balance. The Muskies scored 11 of the first 13 points, leading to a WC timeout. WC answered by scoring 13 of the next 17 points, and the team’s battled to six lead changes and five ties over the final 11:39 minutes of the first half.
Four different players scored in double figures, led by junior Malcolm Heard II (Wilmington, OH/Wilmington). The forward tallied 21 points, eight rebounds and four assists – all team high’s. Senior Brandon Candella (West Chester, OH/Lakota West) added 16 points on 5-of-7 shooting with four rebounds.
After starting the previous 15 games, sophomore Dwight Johnson (Dayton, OH/Jefferson) came off the bench for 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting with three assists and three steals. Junior Jordan Berlin (Wilmington, OH/Wilmington) chipped in with 11 points as the WC bench outscored their counterparts 36-18.
“We are seeing some guys step up, and we are finding some new weapons so to speak,” said Hunt. “When you have Jordan and Dwight coming off the bench to get 25 points, that is going to bode well for your basketball team.”
Wilmington (9-9, 6-5 OAC) will travel to Heidelberg 3 p.m. Saturday. The Student Princes won the first meeting 73-71 on December 22.