LIMA — You know your basketball team is pretty good when they can win even if they don’t bring their “A” game with them.
The UNOH men did exactly that Wednesday night in Wolverine Hoosier Athletic Conference action as they bested visiting Madonna 85-72 despite not being on top of their game.
The Racers jumped out to a 7-0 lead, steadily grew the margin to as many as 15 before settling with a 49-33 lead at the half.
UNOH shot lights out in the half as they connected on 27-of-48 from the field, including 9-of-14 on 3-point shots but there was a spark missing from the play of the Racers.
“The bench gave us a spark in the first half that allowed us to grab the half-time lead.” UNOH coach Chris Adams said.
The second half saw the Crusaders (13-16, 9-12 WHAC) get back to with-in 59-50, before the Racers responded with a 9-0 run to grab control of the contest and keep Madonna at bay.
“Ed Jenkins and Josh Scott took care of business in that run,” Adams said. “Lawrence Jackson also had a good rebounding game tonight.”
Jackson led the way with eight rebounds and also totaled 14 points in the game. Jenkins had a game-high 19 points while Aaron Cross (Ada) was close behind with 18 points for the Racers.
“The negative in this game was our poor free throw shooting (15-of-24).” Adams said. “But we won not playing our best so that is a good thing.”
UNOH, ranked number 17 in NAIA with their 23-6 and 18-3 WHAC record, has grabbed a home game in the WHAC tournament and is still fighting for the potential number two seed in the tournament.
“We need to get ready for Lourdes (Saturday) and grab the number two seed,” Adams said. “We’ll move on from there and take our chances.”
The Racers finished the game connecting on 41-of-84 from the floor for 48 percent and pulled down 37 rebounds to 31 for the Crusaders.
UNOH women 98, Madonna 93
The Racers are getting healthy after some early season injuries and are looking forward to the WHAC tournament after knocking off Madonna 98-93 and raising their record to 15-14 overall and 13-8 in the WHAC.
Madonna came in with a 17-9 record and was second in the league with their 16-4 record so the victory was a good for the Racers,
Balanced scoring was a key as UNOH placed five players in double figures, led by Madison Coldren with a team-high 29 point effort. Coldren also totaled 11 rebounds in the contest.
Lauren Hopfner added 23 points while Porsha Buchanan chipped in with 14 and Sammie Dervisevic (Shawnee) and Shakeia Salters ended the contest with 10 points each.
“Hopfner is healthy now and played well tonight; we struggled some when she was on the bench in foul trouble.” UNOH coach Kyle Menchofer said. “We are peaking at the right time and clinched the number five seed in the play-offs; we want to finish on a high note.”
The Crusaders got a game-high 34 points from their outstanding guard Michele Hayes while team-mate Lizzy Otten chipped in with 17 points for Madonna.