Emory Men's Basketball Tops Oglethorpe - Runs Win Streak To Five

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The Emory University men's basketball team opened 2018 on a successful note, earning a hard-fought Tuesday evening victory at Oglethorpe University.  The Eagles won their fifth straight contest and improved to 9-2 on the season following an 88-82 decision over the Stormy Petrels who slipped to 7-5.

Senior Adam Gigax led five Emory double-figure scorers with a season-high 24 points, sinking 10-of-21 field goal attempts, including four treys, in notching his 10th double-digit effort in as many outings.  Freshman Romin Williams chalked up 18 points, 16 coming in the second half, converting eight field goals in 14 opportunities, including a pair of three-pointers.  Freshman Matt Davet finished the night with 16 points while senior Whit Rapp and junior Gebereal Baitey each chipped in 10 points, with Rapp doling out 12 assists, his 16th career game of double figures, and Baitey coming through with his seventh game of 10 or more points this year.

With Gigax scoring the first five points of the second half, the Eagles held a 50-43 advantage and finished a 21-2 blitz from the latter stages of the opening stanza.  However, Oglethorpe responded with a 17-6 charge of its own that enabled it to post a 60-56 lead with 13:24 on the clock. With Baitey hitting back-to-back buckets, Williams scoring six points and Gigax sinking a three-pointer, the Eagles regained the momentum with a 13-2 spurt that pushed it to a 69-62 margin with 10:54 on the clock.  After OU drew to within four points, a bucket by senior Chris Avant followed by a Baitey basket, gave Emory the first of a two eight-point leads, 77-69, with 4:54 on the clock.  A three-pointer by the Petrels' Justin Hughes key a 6-0 OU run that allowed the home club to draw to within a pair of 3:29 left.  A clutch three-pointer by junior Beau Bommarito with 2:37 remaining, followed by a Williams' triple, gave Emory some breathing room at 83-75 with 1:56 on the clock.  Baskets by Lane Foster and Will Perry kept OU's hopes alive, down three points with 1:16 left, but a three-pointer by Williams late closed out the game's scoring and sealed the outcome.

Both teams shot 46.8 percent from the floor with Emory converting 36-of-77 attempts and Oglethorpe 29-of-62.  Both teams broke out the trey ball as the Eagles nailed a dozen in 30 attempts and the Petrels 14-of-30 from distance.  Emory held a 44-29 edge on the glass and grabbed 15 offensive boards (4 for Oglethorpe) that led to 21 second-chance points. Senior Chris Avant led Emory with 11 rebounds

In a high-scoring opening half that featured two big momentum swings, Emory shrugged off a slow start and used a 16-2 scoring barrage over the final 6:26, which included scoring the final 10 points of the stanza, to claim a 45-43 edge at the break.  Oglethorpe jumped out to a 15-5 lead to start the game and would hit 13 of its first 24 field goal attempts, including eight treys in 12 tries, to take a 35-23 lead with 8:32 left.  The Petrels took their biggest lead of the half at 39-26 with 7:24 on the clock. After a bucket by OU's Justin Hughes pushed to it to a 41-29 cushion, the home squad could muster only one more field goal which allowed the Eagles to claw their way back into the game.  A three-pointer by junior Gebereal Baitey ignited the comeback while freshman Matt Davet and senior Whit Rapp each accounted for five points. Emory sank 48.6 percent (18-of-37) field goal attempts compared to Oglethorpe's 45.7 (16-of-35) and knocked down seven triple tries in 22 opportunities.  The Stormy Petrels converted eight from beyond the arc in 15 opportunities.  Gigax and Davet paced the Eagles' first-half scoring efforts with 12 points apiece with Davet successful on five-of-six from the floor, including two-of-three from three-point range.  Rapp totaled 10 first-half points.

Emory returns to action on Saturday (Jan. 6) when it opens University Athletic Association action by hosting Rochester in a noon start.