COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio Dominican men's basketball team was crowned champions of the Holland Sentinel Community Classic Championship on Saturday, December 12th after a 65-58 win over host Hope College in Holland, Michigan. After starting the season 0-6, the Panthers are at .500 for the first time, posting victories in six of the last seven games.
In the championship game, the Flying Dutchmen (5-3) jumped out to an early three point lead, but the Panther defense made sure this was their last lead of the game. ODU (6-6) played a solid half of basketball and took a six point lead into the break.
In the second half the Panthers continued their strong effort and stretched the lead to 16 points. The Flying Dutchmen added a couple of baskets late to cut the lead, but the win was never in question as the Panthers captured their second tournament championship of the season.
Adriene Rodriguez (Sr./Lorian, OH) paced ODU with 14 points going a perfect 10-for-10 from the free throw line. Aaron Gibbs (Jr./Oberlin, OH; pictured) chipped in with 13 points and seven rebounds.
The Panthers downed the Mustangs of Marygrove College 85-75 in the first game of the tournament. ODU trailed by three at the half, but stormed back to drop a season high 57 points in the second half.
Zak Kapron (So./Malvern, OH) lead the Panther attack against Marygrove with a career high 21 points on 8-for-12 shooting. Gibbs dropped in 19 points and 12 rebounds, while John Trew (So./Barberton, OH) finished with 16 points.
Gibbs collected his second MVP trophy of the season after averaging 16 points and 9.5 boards for the tournament. Trew was also named to the All-Classic Team after scoring a combined 26 points. Rounding out the team was Chris Nelis and Peter Bunn of Hope College , Marcus Hopkins of Marygrove and Ryan Nisson of Purdue-North Central.
ODU will return to action after the holidays when they travel to Springfield, Ohio for the Charles B. Zimmerman Memorial Classic hosted by NCAA Division III Wittenberg University. The Panthers will take on Marian College (Ind.) on Tuesday, December 29th. Tip-off is set for 4:30 p.m.