Men’s basketball splits 2 at home
Published: Thursday, December 6, 2012
Updated: Thursday, December 6, 2012 03:12
An early season conference clash with seventh- ranked UW-Stevens Point didn’t bode well for the UW Oshkosh men’s basketball team as the Pointers won 74-53 at the Kolf Sports Center.
The Pointers started hot as they jumped out to an early 15-4 lead on some good shooting and offensive rebounds.
The Titans responded with an 8-0 run of their own, but 15-12 was as close as the game would get. The Pointers closed the half on a 30-14 run for a 45-26 halftime lead.
The Titans did play better in the second half as they made multiple runs, but the Pointers shot nearly 55 percent from the field for the game which proved too much for the Titans.
Freshman forward Andre Wallace led the Titans with 12 hard earned points and senior guard Sean Wise added 10 more on just seven shots.
Wallace, who had some nice post moves, credited the coaching staff and having an aggressive mentality inside on offense.
“It’s just will, and coach has [us] working on post moves everyday,” Wallace said. “When you’re playing down in the post it’s all about heart and playing bigger than what you are.”
Wise thought the team’s defense lacked in the first half and it was partially due to poor offense and turnovers.
“We have to stay disciplined and buy into the system, and we all know the system works,” Wise said. “We [can’t] let our offense dictate how we play defense.”
Rebounding also continued to be problematic for the Titans as the Pointers out-rebounded the Titans 34-17 including a 10-4 advantage on offensive rebounds.
Head coach Pat Juckem said the team is working on it in every aspect of practice and making it a focus point for the team.
“We are addressing it on every level in film study and stat practice, and it’s a possession by possession emphasis,” Juckem said. “We are a little undersized but that can’t become a crutch.”
The Titans also played the game without typical starter Dylan Wurtz who is injured.
The Titans split two games last week with a 62-55 home win Dec. 1 against Bethany Lutheran College and a tough 67-63 loss Nov. 29 at Augustana College.
Both games featured back and forth battles with the Titans experiencing the side of each outcome.
Against Bethany Lutheran the Titans were able to go on an 8-0 run to end the game and tally the team’s second win of the season.
Corey Nickel led the team with 17 points while Wurtz chipped in with 10.
The Titans were able to force 20 turnovers while only committing just 12 to propel them to victory.
At Augustana, the Vikings out rebounded the Titans 47-22 to remain undefeated.
Jade Roysten led all scoring in the losing effort with 20 points while Nickel added 15 of his own.
For the Titans, rebounding has been an issue despite playing well in other facets of the game.
Juckem thought the team was able to play well enough to overcome the rebounding disadvantage on Dec. 1 but they still need to find a way to fix the problem.
“The thing we didn’t do was rebound the basketball,” Juckem said. “Its been our Achilles heel so far this year. We are not rebounding the ball at the level we need to consistently win games.”
The Titans will continue conference play Saturday against UW-Platteville.