Nick Clark nailed eight 3-pointers en route to 35 points, Kennedy Drey added 22 points and eight rebounds, and the high-flying Buena Vista offense was in sync yet again en route to an 89-77 victory inside of Siebens Fieldhouse over visiting Simpson College to begin Iowa Conference play on Wednesday night.
Clark erupted for seven 3-pointers and 25 points in the first half as BVU built a 50-37 halftime lead. The senior guard was on pace to put the IIAC single-game record of 11 3-point makes in jeopardy, but settled for a career-high eight. He now has four 30-point games this season which is the most in the IIAC.
Drey scored seven quick points to start the second half to help the Beavers extend their lead. He finished 9-of-14 from the floor and also had a game-high four offensive rebounds. Sean Morgan, the nation's most efficient shooter, was at it again. He missed his first shot from the floor, but then went on to make his final six en route to 13 points and seven rebounds, while adding a career-high four blocks. Thomas Wisecup dished out a career-high eight assists, as BVU dished out 23 assists on 33 made field goals.
The Beavers, who came in leading the league in scoring at 89 points, shot a sizzling 57.9 percent from the field (12-of-27 from downtown) and picked up their third straight conference-opening win.
Clark made a trio of 3's and had nine points in the first five minutes to help put BVU in front 14-6. The lead reached double figures for the first time at 21-10 midway through the half. Simpson (7-5, 0-1 IIAC) hung around, getting back within four at 29-22, but Clark again ended the surge with another three to extend the lead.
BVU went back up by double figures with just over 5:00 to go in the half, and the Beavers would maintain that lead the rest of the half and take a 13-point cushion into the break.
Drey had seven points and a layup by Bobby Ivey put BVU in front by as many as 19 points just three minutes into the second half. However, just when the team appeared in control, the Storm would slowly fight their way back, but was unable to get any closer than 11.
The win moves BVU to 6-6 overall (1-0 IIAC). The team now looks to go above the .500 mark for the first time this season when it travels to Loras College on Saturday for a 4 p.m. contest. The Duhawks got past Coe to begin league play, 75-68, and improve to 4-1 at home.