Defense Paves Way for Decisive Win Over No. 24 DePauw

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WOOSTER, Ohio – The College of Wooster used its best defensive performance to date, limiting DePauw University to under 30 percent from the field, which allowed the No. 3 ranked Fighting Scots to roll past No. 24 DePauw University 64-48 in a top-25 match-up between North Coast Athletic Conference teams at Timken Gymnasium Saturday afternoon.

Wooster (6-0, 3-0 NCAC) has now collected three wins over top-25 teams in just six games this year.

The Scots never trailed against DePauw (5-2, 2-1 NCAC). They scored the game's first four points and were ahead by 10 (14-4) 6:25 into the action, as the Tigers hit just two of their first nine shots from the floor.

That prompted the visitors to call a timeout, responding with 10 unanswered points to tie the score, and after they tied it again at 19, Wooster closed the half with a 15-2 run the final seven-plus minutes to take control at 34-21. That stretch featured six points from Josh Kipfer.

While DePauw never got the margin within single digits during the second half, the game was still reasonably close with the score 50-38 at the 8:49 mark. Shortly after, Doug Thorpe led a mini-run, converting a three-point play, then Scott Purcell drained a rainbow 3-pointer, and later, a Thorpe lay-up pushed the Scots advantage to 20 (58-38) to take a big step towards sealing the outcome.

For the game, Wooster's defense helped hold the Tigers to 29.1 percent field-goal shooting (16-for-55), including 2-of-23 from 3-point range (.087), and the Scots won the rebounding battle 43-36.

Individually, Dan Fanelly stood out, as Wooster's freshman forward had his first career double-double with 15 points, featuring two dunks and a 3-pointer, and 10 rebounds. He also contributed two blocks and one steal, while Thorpe and Xavier Brown reached double figures in scoring with 13 and 10, respectively.

Also of note, Purcell recorded a well-rounded game with seven points, six rebounds, two assists, and two steals.

Pat Haggin paced DePauw, tallying 13 points, and teammate Tommy Fernitz finished a rebound shy of a double-double (11 points, 9 rebounds).

The Scots have final exams this week and will next play at Wabash College (0-7, 0-2 NCAC) Saturday at 2 p.m.