Stags’ defense cools off Chapman

Riley Hall
Riley Hall

ORANGE, Calif. – Amidst the cold weather and rain on Thursday evening, the No. 21 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's basketball team (12-1, 5-0) made sure Chapman University's offense never heated up, shutting them down in a 62-44 victory. Despite having their second-lowest point total of the season, the Stags were quite efficient on offense, making 49.1 percent of their field goal attempts. The Panthers, on the other hand, were held to their lowest scoring total of the season and were held to a 28.3 percent field goal percentage.

Senior Scott Lynds (CMC) co-led the Stags with 11 points and made several big plays on the defensive end, including five steals. Junior Kendrick Morris (CMC) had a solid night, scoring 10 points and grabbing nine rebounds in only 16 minutes of play while senior Riley Hall (CMC) battled in the glass, pulling down a team-high 12 rebounds. Josh Cohan stood out for the Panthers with 16 points and nine rebounds, while his teammate Tyler Green had 11 points, but the Stags' defense stifled the rest of the team as no other Chapman player scored more than five points. 

The first half got off to a slow start as neither teams scored until more than two and a half minutes into the game. Junior Jack Ely (CMC) sparked the Stags to a 9-0 run with 13:05 left in the half, scoring two consecutive layups, as CMS took a 14-7 lead. The two teams traded baskets until the final two minutes when CMS held a 29-20 lead. During the final stretch of the half, both teams struggled to maintain possession, committing two turnovers each to close the half.

Chapman slowly crept back in the second half and cut the Stags' lead by six with 14:06 left in the game, but sophomore Patrick Myers (CMC) brought life to the CMS offense, working his way to five straight points to give his team a 38-29 lead. The Panthers fought back to cut the deficit to three, but Stags responded with a 9-0 run, including another layup from Myers, making it 47-35 with 7:18 remaining. After Reed Nakakihara converted three free throws for Chapman with 6:01 left in the game, the Stags forced the Panthers into a drought and held them scoreless for four minutes. The Panthers finally broke out of the slump when Cohan made a free throw, but the Stags were up 58-42 in the final two minutes, putting the game out of reach.

The Stags will play their third game of the week this Saturday, Jan. 21 as they face Cal Lutheran (11-4, 4-2) on the road at 4 p.m. CMS swept the Kingsmen last season, winning their last matchup 63-58. Scarlett led the team with 13 points that night.

Box Score

By Young Kim
Sports Information Assistant

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