After suffering only their second loss of the season on Friday night, the 11th ranked Oredigger men’s basketball rebounded in strong fashion on Saturday, defeating Fort Lewis 88-70.
The evening’s contest began as well as CSM could have hoped, as Mines hit their first five shots to jump to the early 10-3 lead. However, the Orediggers got themselves into foul trouble early, allowing the Skyhawks to keep pace with Mines for much of the first half. Despite never trailing in the first half, the Orediggers, who had led by as many as eight points, suddenly found themselves only up 38-36 going into halftime.
Thoughts of a possible Fort Lewis upset bid were quickly suppressed in the second half, though, as CSM opened the period hitting three-of-four from the field and four straight from the free throw line to extend their lead to 49-36 mere minutes into the half. Mines pushed the lead up to 57-40 before Fort Lewis was finally able to find a rhythm shooting the ball. The Skyhawks were able to cut the Oredigger lead to 12, but Mines was able to maintain their own scoring efficiency and answer any scoring runs from Fort Lewis with scoring streaks of their own. This would be the pattern for the rest of the game, and Mines would hold on to win 88-70.
Six Orediggers ended the night in double figures, including all five starters. Brett Green led all scorers with 19 points on the night, and Luke Meisch was one rebound short of achieving a double-double. Trevor Wages put up 14 points to go along with an outstanding defensive effort of three steals, two blocks and a posterizing dunk, while Will Carr added 10 points off of the bench.
Mines held the decisive advantage in most every statistical category, outshooting the Skyhawks by 20% from the field and by 6.7% from three point range. CSM also claimed the overwhelming 37-19 rebounding edge.
The Orediggers (15-2, 11-2 RMAC) hit the road next weekend for their next game, taking on Colorado Mesa (8-9, 6-7 RMAC) in Grand Junction next Friday, January 31st. That game tips off at 7:30pm.