OSKALOOSA – Keenan Stanbridge (Jr.-Quincy, Ill.) came off the bench for 27 points to lead five Iowa Wesleyan College players in double figures, and the Tigers defeated William Penn University on the road for the second straight year, this time by a 97-81 score in both teams’ opening games of the Midwest Collegiate Conference season.
IWC took out a ranked Penn team in Oskaloosa for the second straight year, beating the 17th ranked team in the NAIA Division II poll this year after stopping the Statesmen when they were fifth-ranked in the nation last season. The Tigers improved to 5-5 overall and dropped WPU to 7-4 overall.
Stanbridge hit seven of 10 three-point attempts and led an assault off the bench in which reserves scored 57 points. Jared Callanan (Jr.-Bennington, Vt.) and Matt Lafrenz (Sr.-Bennett, Iowa) came off the bench to add 14 and 10 points, respectively, and Callanan hit four of seven from three-point range as IWC made 14 of 26 three-pointers (53.8%) in the game.
The two upsets, which occurred just over 10 months apart, were similar in how the Tigers took charge in the second half and frustrated the Statesmen into cold shooting as the game went on. This year both teams started off red hot, with IWC making 58.8% of its shots and William Penn 56.8% in a wild first half that saw the Tigers take a 49-48 lead into halftime.
The Statesmen took a six-point lead at 58-52 early in the second half, but Wesleyan clawed back into it and then shut down Penn for a stretch in seizing control. The Tigers took the lead back on a three-pointer by Callanan making it 66-65 with 10:49 left.
Penn took the lead back two possessions later, but Wesleyan held WPU to just two points over the next 5:19. Stanbridge hit back-to-back threes in getting the lead back, and IWC would not trail again. Josh Hogue (Jr.-Oxford, Iowa) hit a jumper to push the lead to 80-69 with 5:54 left, and the Statesmen would get no closer than nine the rest of the way as the Tigers pushed the lead to as much as 20 in the final minute.
Brett Humpal (Sr.-Decorah, Iowa) added 18 points, seven rebounds and five assists, and Da’kari Shelby (Sr.-O’Fallon, Ill.) had 10 points and 16 rebounds. Jason Garber (Sr.-Emden, Ill.) added seven points and a game-high seven assists. The Tigers shot 52.2% for the game, making 36 of 69 shots, and also out-rebounded Penn 42-40.
The Statesmen shot just 10 of 36 in the second half (27.8%) and finished 31-for-73 for the game (42.5%). WPU also made just six of 25 three-point attempts (24.0%), including zero of nine in the second half.
The Tigers look to move to 2-0 in MCC play on Saturday when they host Clarke College at Ruble Arena. Game time is scheduled for 3 p.m.
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; firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.