CEDAR RAPIDS – Iowa Wesleyan College raced out to a big halftime lead and then had to hold off several comeback attempts by Trinity International (Ill.) University in the second half before prevailing for a 98-84 win over the Trojans Saturday afternoon at the Bosch Financial Shootout hosted by Mount Mercy College.
IWC saw a 20-point lead early in the second half trimmed to two points, but the Tigers got some clutch baskets from Gary Rademaker (Jr.-Emden, Ill.) and others down the stretch and finished with a split of their two games in the tourney. IWC also got its second win of the season to even its record at 2-2.
Wesleyan shot a sizzling 65.6% in the first half in building a 52-34 halftime lead. Jared Callanan (Sr.-Bennington, Vt.) hit five three-pointers and Weldon Miller (Jr.-San Rafael, Calif.) hit seven of his first eight shots, scoring 14 points in the first 20 minutes. The Tigers were in control with a double-digit lead much of the half and led by as many as 20 points.
The Tigers again stretched the lead out to 20 early in the second half before TIU started to mount a comeback. The Trojans chipped away, getting hot behind the three-point line and eventually drawing within two points at 72-70 with 7:29 left.
Rademaker hit a free throw and had a three-pointer as IWC quickly pushed the lead back to 78-72, but another three-pointer by the Trojans made it a one possession game with 5:58 left. Callanan hit two more three-pointers, though, and Rademaker hit a pair of free throws to push the lead back to 88-78 with 3:49 left. Rademaker added four more straight points over the next minute and the Tiger lead would not slip below double figures the rest of the way.
Callanan led Wesleyan with a career-high 21 points, in all hitting 7 of 12 three-point attempts. Miller finished with 19 points and added a game-high 11 rebounds for his third straight double-double, while Reggie Shipp (Jr.-Aurora, Ill.) also had 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Rademaker finished with 15 points, all in the second half, and Blake Smith (Fr.-Sydney, Australia) added 12 points. Wesleyan finished the game making 34 of 61 shots (55.7%) including 50% of its three-point tries (12-for-24).
Ignas Verbus led five players scoring in double figures for TIU with 23 points. The Trojans made 43.8% of their shots (28-for-64) but fell to 1-3 this year.
IWC will be on the road again Tuesday when it travels to Hannibal, Mo., to face Hannibal-LaGrange College at 7 p.m. An audio broadcast will be available online at www.iwc.edu/onlinemedia.
For more information regarding the IWC basketball programs or any of the Tiger athletic teams, contact sports information director Adam Glatczak (319-385-6306 phone; 319-385-6384 FAX; email@example.com e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.
Box score IWC 98 TIU 84