Basketball wins three straight games

Morgan Van Lanen

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The UW Oshkosh men’s basketball team defeated Viterbo University 99-78 on Dec. 1 in its third straight victory, improving its record to 3-2 overall. The Titans shot 57.9 percent (33-57) from the field, 54.2 percent (13-24) from beyond the 3-point arc, and 82.4 percent (14-17) from the free throw line. It was their best shooting performance since beating Silver Lake College 100-51 on Feb. 20, 2010. Sophomore guard Charlie Noone was one of six Titans who shot in double figures. Noone, who made 6 of 7 shooting from the floor and 4 of 5 from the 3-point range, had a career-high 20 points. Noone said the team was excited to take on a talented Viterbo team. “Viterbo is a great team with a lot of good players,” Noone said. “It was a great test in our first long road trip.” Freshman guard Ben Boots contributed 15 points, while junior guard Kyle Bolger, junior forward Sean Dwyer, and junior forward Max Schebel added 12 points apiece, and senior guard Alex Olson had 10. Four minutes into the game, UWO took a 5-4 lead, and they never looked back. With 12:49 left in the first half, the Titans were up 20-4 after an 18-0 run that included two 3-pointers from Dwyer. Viterbo missed six consecutive shots and had five turnovers during the span. The Titans were up 44-25 at halftime after Bolger scored the final four points in the remaining minutes of the first half. Two of those points came from a jumper at the buzzer. However, at the 6:42 minute mark, the V-Hawks cut its deficit to 73-61. The Titans answered with seven points, including a 3-pointer from Boots and four free throws from Noone. Viterbo outscored UWO 53-49 in the second half. Overall, they shot 43.3 percent (26-60) from the floor, 42.3 percent (11-26) from the 3-point range, and 78.9 percent (15-19) from the free throw line. On Nov.24, the men’s basketball team also defeated Edgewood College 99-53 in Oshkosh. It was their highest point total since scoring 100 against Silver Lake College on Feb. 20, 2010. They also made the most field goals since making 37 against UW-River Falls on Dec. 10, 2011 and the most 3-pointers since making 16 against UW-Superior on Feb. 2, 2013. Fifteen players from UWO contributed to the 99 points. Freshman guard Brett Wittchow led the team with a career-best 16 points in 16 minutes-played, which included 6 of 8 shots from the field and 3 of 4 shots from the free throw line. Dwyer had a season-high 14 points. However, he said every member of the team helped add to the win, as the UWO bench contributed to 67 of 99 points scored. “I was just glad that I could contribute to the team and help us get the win,” Dwyer said. “There wasn’t one shot or moment that stood out to me because it was a complete team win and everyone was involved.” Less than three minutes into the game, UWO had a 9-0 lead over the Eagles. Junior forward AJ Mueller put the Titans up 27-17 with 9:10 remaining in the first period on a lay up. After being up 43-25 at halftime, Oshkosh began the second half with a 21-4 run that included eight points from Wittchow and five from Dwyer. With 13:35 left in the contest, the Titans were up 66-27. The Titans have beaten the Eagles 19 out of the last 23 meetings. Noone said focusing on basics during practice and perfecting them helped the team get a dominating victory over Edgewood College. “It felt great to get a big win over Edgewood,” Noone said. “Our team put together a solid performance, and it was great to head into Thanksgiving break with a win.” On Nov. 21, the Titans defeated Wisconsin Lutheran College 88-81 in Oshkosh. Olson had a season-high 19 points and a game-high five assists as UW Oshkosh shot 46.6 percent (27-58) from the field and 77.8 percent (28-36) from the free throw line. They also had a 36-30 advantage in rebounds. Wisconsin Lutheran College shot 50 percent (32-64) from the floor. With 11 minutes remaining in the first half, the Warriors were up 25-17, with their largest lead of the game, after making 10 of their first 13 shots. At half, though, the Titans were up 44-38. The Warriors tied the game twice during the second half of the game, but the Titans held onto their lead for good when Olson made two free throws that put the score at 78-76. With 65 seconds left of the match, Olson scored a 3-pointer that gave the Titans an 81-77 advantage. On Nov. 20, UWO fell to Coe College (Iowa) 75-70 in their first game at home. The men trailed the entire game until 4:18 remained in the second half when Noone hit a 3-pointer to put the Titans up 63-62 over the Kohawks. Schebel made a free throw to knot the game at 67 with 2:11 remaining. However, the Kohawks took the lead for good with 92 seconds to go on a 3-pointer. Noone led the team with 13 points and Mueller had a team-high nine rebounds. The Titans take on Maranatha Baptist University on Dec. 8 at home at 7 p.m. After winning three consecutive games, Wittchow said he is confident in his team’s ability to stay focused in practice and play hard during games. “I think one thing we need to keep up to continue our winning streak is playing great defense,” Wittchow said. “Coach Juckem has really been on us lately to fix our closeouts and also to talk more on defense. I think if we do those things we put ourselves in a great spot to win games.”