FULTON, Mo. - Westminster men's basketball notches a double-digit victory over Iowa Wesleyan.
Westminster improves to 14-8 overall and 10-5 in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, tied for second place with Eureka.
"We had a great night at the Historic Gymnasium," said Westminster Head Coach Matt Mitchell. "We were able to raise a great deal of awareness for Coaches vs. Cancer, had a wonderful crowd, and pulled out a victory."
After getting off to a slow offensive start and opening the first five minutes by trading baskets with the Tigers, Westminster was finally about to put together a 8-0 run on back-to-back three-pointers from Collin Caywood and Steven Brandt and two layups from Carter Wands to put Westminster up 22-12 at the 10:13 mark.
Westminster continued to hold a 10-point lead, but the Tigers were able to slowly erase the deficit, getting back within four points of the Blue Jays. Baskets from Tanner Cochran, Cody Shaw, and Caywood gave Westminster the double-digit lead again with 3:02 to play in the half.
Caywood and Brandt again hit back-to-back three-pointers to end the half on top 45-31.
Within the first three minutes of the second half, the Tigers again cut the lead to single digits, coming within five of the Blue Jays. A short 6-0 run on four points from Stu Hollandsworth put Westminster back on track, going up 53-42 with 14:24 in the half.
The Tigers answered with a 6-0 run of their own, but Kobe Wands hit back-to-back three-pointers and two freethrows to keep the Blue Jays on top. Westminster continued to put together small runs and build their lead. With 5:50 to play in the game, Wands hit another three-pointer for their biggest lead of the game at 76-58. Cochran hit a three-pointer with 2:41 to play for Westminster's last basket of the game, finishing on top 79-66.
Kobe Wands led Westminster with 20 points, going 7-15 from the field and 4-9 from behind the arc. Cochran added 13 while Hollandsworth recorded 12. Caywood hit three three-pointers and a jump shot for 11 points, and Brandt also added 11 points. Westminster turned the ball over just six times, totaling just 12 turnovers over the last two games.
"We are really starting to play consistently on both ends of the floor and that is encouraging," said Mitchell. "Five guys in double figures shows our team chemistry is really starting to click."
Westminster travels to Eureka for a big conference matchup to break the tie for second place. Tipoff is set for Saturday at 3 p.m.