Junior Nathan Scott tied a career-high with 20 points as the Wilmington College men's basketball team cruised to an 87-58 win over Otterbein Wednesday in Ohio Athletic Conference action at Fred Raizk Arena in Hermann Court.
For just the fourth time this season, the Fightin' Quakers shot over 50 percent and Wilmington moved to 3-1 when they make more than half of its shots.
"I thought for a game, this is the most consistent four-minute segments we've played," said Wilmington head coach K.C. Hunt. "At halftime we had won all of the five of the four-minute wars. If we can sustain consistent energy and effort, we can do some special things."
Wilmington shot a blistering 62.1 percent (18-of-29) from the field, including 56.3 percent (9-of-16) from three-point range, in opening up a 22-point halftime lead.
While the green-clad home team was torching the nets, their defense frustrated their opponents. Otterbein was just 9-of-25 (36 percent) from the field, and made just one three-pointer in eight attempts. Wilmington also recorded five of its season-high nine blocks over the first 20 minutes. The nine rejections were the most by a WC team since December 20, 2014.
"This was a testament to our defense and our help side," said Hunt. "I thought our pace, and how we got them sped up, was to our advantage."
Back-to-back three-pointers from Scott (Sardinia, OH/Eastern) and junior Christian Jones (Hamilton, OH/Hamilton) capped a 17-5 first-half run that enabled the Fightin' Quakers to open up their first double-digit lead of the game. The lead continued to slowly stretch, and before the end of the first half, Wilmington led by as much as 24.
All doubt of the outcome was erased as WC tallied 16 of the first 19 points in the second half to push its advantage to 35 points. Wilmington led by as much as 41 last in the second half.
Scott and sophomore Andrew Russell (Columbus, OH/Central Crossing) combined for 31 points and 10 rebounds with Russell pulling down a career-best nine rebounds.
"Those guys do what they do, but what I was most proud of was Drew's nine rebounds," said Hunt. "If he is going to continue to rebound like that, it is going to make us a different basketball team. We have been talking with him about activity level on the glass, and hopefully, it's been sinking in. That makes us a different basketball team."
Junior D.J. Iles (Fayetteville, OH/Fayetteville Perry) dished out a team-high six assists, while Jones added five dimes. Freshmen Noah Chatman (Goodluttsville, TN/Beech) and Kameron Moore (Cincinnati, OH/Purcell Marian) each established career-highs with three blocks.
"Our pace and space was the key to the game," said Hunt. "We were really unselfish tonight. When this team plays with pace and shares the basketball, we have a lot of weapons."
Wilmington (7-9 overall, 2-7 OAC) hosts Heidelberg (6-10 overall, 2-7 OAC) 3 p.m. Saturday in the first game of the second half of OAC action. The Student Princes were 97-85 victors on December 10 in Tiffin.