Tigers’ bench comes up big
The Iowa Wesleyan College men’s basketball team came back from a disappointing showing against Grand View Tuesday night with a big win over Hannibal-La Grange last night. The Tigers beat the visiting Trojans, 57-49.
Shooting just 26 percent in the first 20 minutes, the Tigers went into the halftime tied at 21. But the offense picked up in the second half, and the Tigers upped their shooting percentage to over 46 percent.
The Tigers’ defense, led by Dan Missey, was very strong, holding the Vikings to only a 32 percent shooting percentage.
“Danny was very tough tonight. He was up for the challenge of guarding a big player and he did a fantastic job,” said Head Coach Jess Settles.
Missey also had two steals on the night.
Matt Schackow, who recovered from back surgery in the offseason, was — according to his coach — extremely physical.
“Those are the kind of games we need Matt to have,” Settles said.
Joe Evans and Will Stephenson helped the Tigers rebounding, with six and nine defensive rebounds respectively. Evans also added five steals for the Tigers.
The Tigers’ offense, once again led by Derrick Nillissen with 15 points, came up big when they needed to.
“We know what Derrick can do and he keeps doing it, keeping us in games,” said Settles.
The Tigers’ bench played a big role in the game as well. Coming off the bench for the first time this season was Kyle Warner. The 2012 All-American was previously injured.
“I found out at about 2 p.m. this afternoon that Kyle would be good to go for tonight’s game,” said Settles. “He’s great to have back out there and we are so glad to have him back.”
Also coming off the bench was Stephenson, who had seven points on the night, and freshman Joe Lennon. “I really can’t say enough how big those guys were for us tonight. They played some very valuable minutes and were huge when we needed them in there,” Settles said.
The Tigers take the weekend off and host St. Ambrose Tuesday.
“We will be back to a full roster on Tuesday (with the return of seniors Jon Umoren and Bruce Brooks) and I think it will be another big game, another exciting game for us. We needed that one though,” said Settles.
Tip off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Ruble Arena.
Lauren Menning is a communication major at Iowa Wesleyan College and is aiding in the sports information office.