HILLSDALE, Mich. – Another big second half lifted Ohio Dominican's men's basketball team to a 92-67 regional victory over Lewis on Wednesday afternoon at the Hillsdale Lanes Thanksgiving Classic.
Not only was this the third straight game scoring over 90 points for the Panthers, but it was also the third straight win of at least 25 points for ODU, which improved to 3-2.
Facing a Lewis team that reached the GLVC title game last year, the Panthers shot outscored the Flyers (1-4) 48-26 in the second half, clamping down defensively to hold Lewis to 32.1 percent shooting over the final 20 minutes.
ODU, meanwhile, shot a blistering 55.2 percent from the field (32-of-58) and also 53.6 percent from the three point line (15-of-28), setting season-highs in field goal percentage, three pointers made and three point percentage. ODU also made a season-best 13 free throws and shot 81.3 percent from the charity stripe.
Five Panthers scored in double figures as sophomore Sam Hickey (Toledo, Ohio) led the way with a game-high 25 points on 9-of-12 shooting from the field (7-of-10 from three). He also grabbed five rebounds in 21 minutes.
Sophomore Hasan Varence (Queens, N.Y.) scored 15 points with 10 rebounds (six offensive) in 23 minutes, his first double-double of the year, and senior Adam Cytlak (Van Buren, Ohio) scored a season-best 15 points on 5-of-7 from the field while burying four triples. Junior Ben Casanova (Sylvania, Ohio) added 11 points, five rebounds and a career-high five assists off the bench as well, while senior Shemar Waugh (Columbus, Ohio) finished with 12 points and five assists.
ODU had a 44-41 lead at the half but trailed momentarily at 47-46 three minutes into the second half before taking over. Casanova made a layup and Waugh hit a three to put the Panthers back in the lead, and Varence followed up a dunk with a three pointer to make it 56-49 ODU with 13 minutes left.
Cytlak had an old fashioned three point play on the ensuing possession to give the Panthers a 10 point cushion, and the lead stretched to 64-51 on a Hickey triple with 9:41 left.
Holding a 72-60 lead with 5:21 left, the Panthers put the game out of reach with a 20-5 burst over the next four and a half minutes, with Hickey hitting a trio of threes and Casanova sinking one as well to cap the run.
The Panthers had trailed by as much as 11 at 15-4 in the first seven minutes, but later in the half went on a 24-7 run to grab their biggest lead of the opening frame at 34-24 on a layup by senior Ronnie Williams (Columbus, Ohio) with 4:49 to play. The Flyers countered and tied the score at 39 before ODU took a 44-41 lead at the break as Waugh came up with a steal that led to a Hickey transition layup before the buzzer.
Ohio Dominican returns home to take on Wright State-Lake at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29.
Contact: Scott Miles