ST. LOUIS, MO. -- Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology buried nine three-pointers in the first half to take a lead into the locker room against a nationally ranked squad, before Washington University rallied to top the Fightin' Engineers 94-74 in the men's basketball season opener on Friday night.
Rose-Hulman led 50-46 at the break against the No. 11 ranked team in the d3hoops.com preseason national poll, led by 14 points and perfect 4-4 three-point shooting by senior Jordy Martin (New Albany). The Fightin' Engineers led by six points on two occasions in the first half, including at 50-44 in the final minute after a score by sophomore Matt Loesing (Elsberry, Mo.).
Washington University responded with a strong shooting second half performance to shoot 60% from the field for the game in the victory.
The Bears placed all five players in double figures to earn their third win in as many games. Chris Klimek led the Bears with 26 points, and Alan Aboona added 18. Nick Burt scored 14 points, Tim Cooney added 13, and Nick Burt scored 12 for the balanced offensive attack. Aboona also had a game-high 12 assists.
Senior Jake Dodd (St. Peters, Mo./Missouri-St. Louis) paced Rose-Hulman with 15 points and four assists. Martin and senior Julian Strickland (Indianapolis/Pike) added 14 points each, with Strickland grabbing a team-high six rebounds.
Other key contributors for the Fightin' Engineers included junior Michael Hallstein (Hopedale, Ill./Olympia) and Loesing with seven points each.
Rose-Hulman finished the game 12-21 from three-point range, falling just two shy of its single-game school record.
After the Fightin' Engineers gained their largest lead at 53-46 on a three-pointer by Strickland at the 19:03 mark, Washington University responded to take the lead at 57-56 on a trey from Aboona. Another Strickland three-pointer knotted the score again at 61-61 with 14:34 left. The nationally ranked Bears then showed their mettle with a 23-4 run over the next 10 minutes to secure the victory.
The men's basketball team also wishes to thank the over 70 attendees at a pregame alumni reception hosted by the Alumni Affairs Office. We appreciate your support!
Washington University improved to 3-0 on the season, while Rose-Hulman stands 0-1. The Fightin' Engineers return to action against the University of Chicago on Saturday night at 7 p.m. in day two of the Washington University Lopata Classic.