by Joshua Stevens
Four players scored in double digits for Cedarville as they handled Davis & Elkins 88-71 on Saturday, keeping them in third place in the G-MAC.
Freshman Branden Maughmer had 16 points, sophomore Connor TenHove had 15, and freshmen Kollin Van Horn, Quinton Green and Isaiah Speelman had 12, 12 and 11, respectively, as the Jackets (10-8, 7-3 G-MAC) were up by has many as 23 in the victory. Senior guard Grant Zawadzki dished out 13 assists, including an impressive behind-the-back pass to Van Horn for a layup in the second half.
“Offensively we were playing some of the best basketball we’ve played all year,” said head coach Pat Estepp.
The Jackets scored the first seven points of the game. They extended their lead to 12-2 after capitalizing on two Senator turnovers. They forced four more turnovers in the first half, and moved the ball effectively, giving them open shots on offense for the first 20 minutes.
The Senators got some momentum, when an inside score cut the Jacket lead to two with 5:37 left in the first half. They briefly took the lead on a 3-pointer, but Maughmer quickly answered with a three of his own. The Jackets got some stops and took a seven-point lead into the locker room, with Maughmer scoring 12 points with four assists, while Zawadzki added six points and seven assists.
“We just needed to pick it up on defense in the first half,” Estepp said. “But we finished the half well, with four stops in a row.”
With a renewed energy, the Jackets jumped back up by 10 to start the second half and never looked back. A 3-pointer from freshman Quinton Green with 3:33 left put the Jackets up 23, as they cruised to the 17-point win.
“We were balanced and had a lot of options for scoring tonight,” said TenHove.
With the Jackets now 7-3 in the G-MAC, they look to keep pace with Walsh and Ohio Dominican, who both sit at 6-3 in the conference, behind Findlay and Hillsdale, both 8-2. The Jackets host Ohio Dominican on Thursday, which will be a huge game for both teams.
“If we stay focused and play the type of defense we’re capable of, we can be tough to guard and defend,” TenHove said.
“The biggest things for us are defense and rebounding,” said Estepp. “If we can do that, with the amount of 3-point shooters we have and guys that can score inside, we got a chance to be a handful.”
Joshua Stevens is a junior journalism major and sports writer for Cedars. He enjoys rooting for the Tennessee Titans and listening to old-school music.