‘D’ leads Mavs to blowout win
A little outside game, a little inside game.
A lot of defense.
The Mesa State College men’s basketball team showed all facets of the game Friday night in the first round of the Holiday Inn Tip-Off at Brownson Arena, easily handling Colorado College 91-51.
“I was really pleased with our execution at both ends,” Mesa State coach Jim Heaps said. “We had a couple of questionable shots in the first half but really for the most part I thought our offense, the kids really tried to execute what we asked them to.”
With Colorado College doing everything in its power to sag the defense in on 6-foot-8 post Kurt Bangle, the Mavericks simply hit open shot after open shot from the perimeter.
Bangle, who finished with 16 points, didn’t even take a shot until the 6:16 mark of the first half.
“If teams are going to play a 2-3 zone and guard your perimeter guys with two players and keep three packed around the post, Kurt’s not going to get shots,” Heaps said. “But you’re going to give up open perimeter looks and that means you’ve got to hit a jump shot.”
And the Mavs did.
Ryan Mathews hit a couple of early 3-pointers, Sean Flohr added two and Brian Kenshalo one more all in the first 10 minutes of the game, forcing the Tigers out of the 2-3 zone.
Then it was up to Bangle, who missed only one shot all night and made all six of his free throws.
“They came out playing zone and really packed it in,” said Bangle, who received a $2,000 scholarship from the Alex Bennett Memorial Fund at halftime. “We have enough good guards, if
they want to take away the inside we’ve got players who can go outside. We’ve got a ton of shooters, you have to pick your poison there. ”
As soon as the Tigers went to their man-to-man defense, Bangle had all kinds of room to work inside, and the Mavericks found him.
They were even able to go to their “big lineup,” putting Bangle and Jake Swartzendruber on the floor together and got some high-low post looks.
Swartzendruber added 11 points and eight rebounds off the bench.
“It just depends on the team we’re playing,” Swartzendruber said of the double-post look, where he slides out to play forward. “ Our guards did a really good job finding us and in our 2-motion,
Kurt and Jase (Herl) and I were passing down low to each other.”
Defensively, the Mavs had some trouble early with Colorado College’s Princeton offense, so Heaps had them switch to a zone, which clogged up the cutting lanes for the Tigers and got them out of their offense.
An 18-1 run in the first half pushed Mesa State’s lead to 39-20, with the Mavs’ defense forcing 10 first-half turnovers and turning them into points on the other end.
Mathews was saddled with foul trouble and finished with only the two 3-pointers, but the Mavericks got a nice lift from Andre Carter, who scored 13 points and grabbed five rebounds. He also came up with a couple of steals, converting one into a three-point play early in the second half for a 53-33 lead.
He hit a 3 with 14 minutes left for a 61-34 lead and the Mavs cruised from there.
Lance Jacobs led Colorado College (1-4) with 17 points and Nick Rose added 12.
Western State 79, Johnson & Wales 73
Cameron Burney’s 23 points helped the Mountaineers overcome a 35-26 halftime deficit.
Burney converted a three-point play five minutes into the second half that tied the game after Western opened the half on a 12-3 run.
After two free throws by Burney with 15:10 to play, the Mountaineers didn’t trail again.
Allen McFarland had 17 points, Jeremy Brooks 13 and Martin Graham 12 for Western State (2-1), which plays Colorado College at 4 this afternoon.
Johnson & Wales got 26 points from Andrew Baker, who hit 11 of 15 field goals, 16 from Ethan Evenson and 15 from Chris Brunson.