Low Post Presence Leads Wilmington Men’s Basketball Past USciences, 57-52, in Key CACC Home Contest
MBB: Wilmington 57 - Usciences 52
Saturday, January 12, 2013 - Newark, Del.
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Freshman Shai Henry hits a free-throw in the first half against USciences. He finished with 10 points and nine rebounds. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. Photo credit: Brittany Biddle.Senior Brandon Fox goes to work on the block in the first half against USciences. He collected his third double-doule with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. Photo credit: Brittany Biddle.
Brandon Fox recorded his third double-double of the season while freshman Shai Henry nearly had his first as the two big men led the Wilmington University men’s basketball team to a key 57-52 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference victory over University of the Sciences on Saturday afternoon at the WU Athletics Complex.
In a tough defensive battle, the Wildcats (4-11, 4-4 CACC) took the lead for good on a Fox layup with 3:06 remaining in regulation as he finished with 19 points and 11 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. Henry was the only other Wildcat that reached double figures as he scored 10 points and was a rebound away from his first career double-double.
The Wildcats led for the majority of the first half, with only the first bucket of the game giving the Devils (7-9, 5-4 CACC) their only lead of the opening 20 minutes. The home team carried as large as an eight point lead in the first half and the lead was at seven points before USciences’ Garret Kerr scored five straight points to make it a two point game at the half.
The Devils took their first lead of the second half on a layup from Patrick Connaghan with 14:09 showing on the scoreboard and the teams would battle back and forth for the next 10 minutes. From that point, the lead changed hands on three more occasions while there was also one tie.
The visitors held as large as a four point lead late in the second half before Fox, Henry and Wildcats made their final move. Henry started the run with his lone three-pointer of the contest with 5:58 remaining to cut the margin down to one point. After a USciences’ bucket pushed the lead back out to three points, Henry laid one home from Herbert Dennis to again close the gap to one point.
Then it was Fox’s turn to get in on the action as his conventional three-point play 3:06 left gave the Wildcats the lead for good at 43-42. James Pee tracked down his own missed jumper for an offensive rebound and with the defense scrambling, Henry cut down the baseline and found an open Fox in the lane who hit the layup and was fouled on the play.
Dennis followed up with a layup of his own on the next Wildcat possession before Henry tipped home a missed shot from Isiah Mason in one fell swoop without letting the ball hit the floor. With 1:37 to play, the Wildcats led 48-42.
From there it was a free-throw shooting competition for the Wildcats, as they kept the Devils at an arms’ reach by hitting nine of their 10 foul shot opportunities inside the final minute of play. USciences could only get within five points in the final minute, and that was with six seconds remaining.
Although the Wildcats only forced seven Devil turnovers, Wilmington turned its three steals and the visitors’ turnovers in 12 points for the game. The Devils only scored five points off 10 Wilmington turnovers.
The Wildcats held CACC leading scorer and rebounder Garret Kerr to only 12 points and nine rebounds on the contest. He had seven points and eight rebounds in the opening 20 minutes of action. Prior to today’s contest, he was averaging 19.4 points and 11.1 rebounds per game. His 12 points today led the USciences’ effort for the game.
Dennis finished with eight points and a game high six assists while Mason came off the bench to score eight points as well for the Wildcats. Wilmington shot 21-for-51 (41.2 percent) from the floor while only hitting 3-of-14 from three-point territory. They also hit 12-of-14 from the foul line, but 10-of-11 in the second half when it counted most.
Wilmington will look to make it three wins in a row on Monday as the Wildcats take on their final nonconference opponent of the 2012-13 season. The Wildcats head to New York Institute of Technology for a 6 p.m. tip.