WOOSTER, Ohio – Junior Spencer Williams became the 42nd member of The College of Wooster men's basketball 1,000-point club, and the Fighting Scots won their sixth straight contest with a 103-85 triumph over Hiram College on Wednesday evening at Timken Gymnasium.
|Junior Spencer Williams became the 42nd Wooster men's player to join the 1,000-point club on Wednesday night.|
Williams, who entered the night with 995 career points, eclipsed the 1,000-point mark on a layup with 2:40 remaining in the opening half.
Wooster (12-6, 9-2 North Coast Athletic Conference), who led nearly wire-to-wire, utilized its long-range shooting to open up a 10-3 lead with 17:08 to go in the half. Senior Dan Fanelly was at the forefront of an 8-0 run, as the forward book-ended the stretch with a pair of 3-pointer, the first of which gave the Scots the lead for good at 5-3.
Hiram's (7-10, 4-6 NCAC) Kyle Deckerd pulled the Terriers within three at 19-16 with 12:29 to go in the stanza on a pair of quick buckets, but Wooster quickly regrouped.
First, freshman Danyon Hempy knocked down a 3-pointer to push the lead out to six. Then, after a Hiram foul away from the ball on the first trifecta, Hempy beat his man to cap the quick six-point swing with a second 3-pointer off the inbounds pass from sophomore Mitch Balser. In fact, the quick 3-pointers marked a stretch of 13 straight Wooster points scored by Hempy, as the dynamite guard later knocked down a jumper and a third 3-pointer before capping the stretch with a dunk on the fast-break feed from Fanelly.
Later, Wooster pushed its lead out to 18 at 41-23 with 6:53 to go in the half. Junior Alex Baptiste headlined a 9-0 spree with a fast-break dunk as the Scots' team speed took over about midway through the half and led to an eventual 58-36 lead at the intermission, marking the third straight game Wooster's scored at least 50 first-half points.
Wooster continued its offensive surge in the second half as the Scots combined to make four of their first five field goals, including a 3-pointer by Fanelly and a Williams' layup that pushed the lead out to 25 both times.
Then, Wooster got the job done at the free-throw line as the Scots' next eight points came at the charity stripe with Williams going a perfect 6-for-6 at the line during that stretch as part of his 12-for-12 mark at the free-throw stripe for the game.
Of note, Williams' night at the free-throw line marked the first time a Scots was perfect from the charity stripe with at least a dozen makes since Scott Purcell went 12-for-12 against Hiram on Jan. 15, 2014.
Later, Baptiste cleaned up on the offensive end with a tip-in to spark a 13-2 burst, enabling Wooster to open up a game-high 30-point lead at 92-62 after a pair of free throws from Fanelly with 7:24 to go in the contest.
Fanelly and Hempy led Wooster with a game-high 19 points each. Fanelly's night included a 4-for-4 outing from beyond the arc, while Hempy was 6-for-8 from the floor, including 3-for-4 from 3-point land. Williams (18), Baptiste (14), and senior Milt Davis (12) rounded out the Scots with double figures in scoring.
Other notable stats included Baptiste's eight rebounds, four Scots with at least three assists - including Balser's game-high five – and sophomore Eric Bulic's three blocks.
Deckerd led Hiram with 10 points and four assists.
Notable, Wooster held Kelvin Jones and Paul Ortiz to a combined 13 points. The duo scored 50 of Hiram's 72 points during the Terriers 72-68 win over the Scots back on Dec. 7.
Next, Wooster starts a stretch of five road games in a six-game span with a 3 p.m. tilt at DePauw University (9-9, 5-6 NCAC) on Saturday.