Strong second half propels Tigers to win
The Iowa Wesleyan College men’s basketball team came out with a big win last night as it defeated St. Ambrose University, 59-46.
The win improves the Tigers to 3-1 on the season.
This was the first game that second-year Head Coach Jess Settles had his whole roster back on the court.
“It’s really great to have those guys back. They bring a lot of leadership to our team and we need that,” said Settles after the game.
The Tigers took a big lead early in the game, going up by as many as 10 points at 12-2. But a few missed shots opened the door for St. Ambrose, and the Bees took the lead late in the half as the Tigers struggled to find the basket.
IWC went into the locker room at halftime down by a score of 22-20, after shooting just 28 percent from the floor in the first half.
The Tigers turned up the pressure in the second half, though.
Trailing the Bees by seven, a three-pointer by Kyle Warner put the Tigers back in the game. IWC then went on a 14-4 run, putting them up 46-40 with just under six minutes to play.
The Tigers pulled away for good on a jumper by Jon Umoren, and they never looked back.
The Tigers’ offense outscored the Bees 20-6 over the last seven minutes in the game, finishing the game with a 33 percent shooting average.
“Our guys fought extremely hard and we came out on top,” said Settles. “They were a good team and we needed to win that game. We have a tough road schedule coming up, and this will really help the guys.”
Kyle Warner returned to the floor for his first full game since being injured and managed a double-double.
“It was great that Kyle could come out tonight and get 11 rebounds and 14 points,” Settles said. “We love having him back and it’s great to have him back out there for us.”
Also returning for the Tigers was Umoren, who had missed the previous three games for a violation of team rules.
“Jon is an excellent leader out there and we’ve definitely missed him,” said Settles.
Umoren also ended the night with 14 points, and the majority of his points came from the stripe: the IWC point guard was 10-for-11 on free throws.
Cam Sanchez and Joe Evans each had seven boards for the Tigers as IWC claimed a 39-36 edge in rebounds on the night.
“Winning the boards was big for us. I think that was an immense difference maker in this game,” Settles said.
The Tigers travel to Quincy (Ill.) University tonight (Wednesday) to take on the Hawks, who are 1-0 on the season.
Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
Lauren Menning is a communication major at Iowa Wesleyan College and is aiding in the sports information office.