Stifling Defense Powers Men’s Basketball To 65-48 Win Over Hillsdale

Stifling Defense Powers Men’s Basketball To 65-48 Win Over Hillsdale

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Dominican's men's basketball team completed a wire-to-wire finish and held Hillsdale to just 29.3 percent shooting from the field in a 65-48 Great Midwest Athletic Conference victory over HC on Tuesday night in Alumni Hall.

Hillsdale (18-7, 12-6) entered Tuesday's game tied for second place in the Great Midwest, but the Panthers used tough defense to hold the Chargers to just 48 points, the fewest amount of points scored by an ODU opponent in its NCAA Division II era. Ohio Dominican blocked six shots, held a 45-33 advantage in rebounding and limited the Chargers to just five three-pointers. Hillsdale never led in the game, and the Panthers have won six of their last seven games and seven of their last nine.

Sophomore forward Hasan Varence (Queens, New York) recorded his ninth double-double of the season, finishing with 13 points 13 rebounds. Senior Ronnie Williams (Columbus, Ohio) scored 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting from the field and connected on three triples. Junior Ben Casanova (Sylvania, Ohio) notched nine points and four rebounds and senior Mike DeLeon (Powell, Ohio) finished with six points, eight rebounds and two blocks for ODU.

The Panthers (14-10, 9-8 G-MAC) used an 8-0 run to start the game and set the tone. Sophomore Ryan Hoyng (Celina, Ohio) connected on a three-pointer to begin the contest with an assist to senior Shemar Waugh (Columbus, Ohio), then Waugh hit a triple of his own with an assist to Hoyng. Two free throws by Varence at the 17:22 mark of the first half gave ODU an early 8-0 lead.

Hillsdale countered with a 6-2 run that cut the Panther lead to 10-6 at the 13:58 mark of the half, but Ohio Dominican used a 17-5 run to command. Leading 23-11 at the 9:14 mark of the first half, sophomore Michael Scott (Hebron, Kentucky) connected on a layup, then another layup at the 8:06 mark by Varence increased the Panther advantage to 27-11.

Hillsdale cut Ohio Dominican's lead to 36-28 at halftime, but the Panthers held the Chargers to just 20 second half points and led by as many as 21 in the final frame, cruising to a 65-48 win.

ODU remains at sixth in the Great Midwest standings and hosts Lake Erie on Thursday night at 5:30 p.m. in Alumni Hall.

Contact: Aaron McPherson