The Cedarville men’s basketball team set a season-high in points scored in their 91-81 win over G-MAC opponent Ohio Valley Thursday night at the Callan Athletic Center.
On offense, it was a three man show for Cedarville in the first half. After giving up a deep three-pointer in the opening seconds and turning the ball over on their first two possessions, an Austin Pickett dunk off of a breakaway steal gave the Yellow Jackets a much needed burst of energy. They played the remainder of the half aggressively pushing the tempo. J.C. Faubion fueled the turnaround, scoring eight of his ten first-half points, all of which came at the rim, in a four-minute span.
Pickett continued his strong play, leading all scorers at half with 13, and Leighton Smith used his size advantage inside to garner 11 first half points. Only Ohio Valley’s seven first half three pointers kept them close, though, and the Jackets went into the half up 44-37.
The Scots refused to lie down, opening the second half with an 8-0 run to take the lead at the under 16 minute media timeout. Cedarville responded out of the timeout with a 10-2 run out of the timeout. Both teams continued the scoring for the next several minutes, Ohio Valley unable to catch up and Cedarville unable to pull away. Cedarville entered the final minutes of the game with a slight lead and held on for the win with timely offense and clutch free-throw shooting.
Six Yellow Jackets scored in double figures, led by Pickett’s 20 on eight of 12 shooting. Faubion recorded his first double-double of the season, connecting on six of his seven shots for 14 points while grabbing 10 rebounds. Smith and Patrick Bain ended with 12 points apiece and Marcus Reineke, the G-MAC’s third leading scorer, finished with 10 despite not scoring until the final three minutes of the game.
The victory moves Cedarville into a three-way tie for third place in the conference with Kentucky Wesleyan and Trevecca, one game behind conference leaders Alderson Broaddus.
Cedarville (6-12 (3-2 G-MAC)) will continue their conference schedule on the road this weekend. The men and women travel to West Virginia this Saturday to take on Salem International before returning home next week for a two week home stretch. They take on non-conference rival Wilberforce next Thursday, January 29. The women’s game will tip off at 5:30 with the men to follow at 7:45.
Tyler Greenwood is a sophomore mechanical engineering major and sports writer for Cedars.