Yeomen Bounce Back to Beat Hiram

Joe Graybeal

Despite a late rally, the Yeomen were unable to come away with a victory against the Spartans of Case Western Reserve University last Saturday. It was a hard-fought contest in which the Yeomen starters logged heavy minutes, forcing a number of turnovers that kept the game within reach. Senior forward Andrew Fox recorded a game-high six steals that led to multiple baskets for the Yeomen. Fox was also the leading scorer and rebounder for the Yeomen with 14 points and eight rebounds. Overall, there was balanced scoring among the Yeomen’s starters with junior guard Geoff Simpson recording 13 points, junior point guard Emmanuel Lewis contributing 10 and first-year center Randy Ollie and sophomore guard Austin Little providing nine and seven points, respectively.

While the score at halftime was 24–29 with Case leading, over the first 10 minutes of the second half Case was able to push its lead to 32–46, its largest lead of the game. Case had the benefit of a career game from Tim Chung, who recorded 22 points on seven of 10 shots and was four of five from three-point range. But as the half progressed, the Yeomen were able to find openings to knock down shots, primarily coming off of pick and rolls where Fox would set screens for either Little or Lewis, both of whom had success finding their own shot or open man.

Asked if those shots were there earlier in the game and if there was just hesitation to shoot them or if the Yeomen were doing something differently offensively, Little stated, “I think they were expecting us to go to our big men a little more towards the end which may have opened up some space. We were also looking for our own shot at that point more than at the beginning.” In doing so, the Yeomen were able to pull back within two with five minutes left, but they were unable to pull out a victory. The final score was 53¬–58.

On Wednesday, the Yeomen put in a strong effort and knocked off North Coast Athletic Conference opponent Hiram, ending the game 51–55. Little lead the way for the Yeomen, contributing career high 20 points. Fox also had a strong game with 11 points and nine assists. The Yeomen got out in front early with excellent shooting from behind the arc and were able to push their lead to 15 at the half. Thirty of their 38 first-half points came from three-point shots while they shot 10 for 13 in the paint. Despite a better second half from Hiram, they were unable to close the gap and the Yeomen held on for the victory.

Looking forward, the Yeomen return to Oberlin on Saturday for a match-up with Alma College. Despite some strong efforts and positive performances, there are still areas for the Yeomen to improve. Little commented, “We need to figure out what’s working early, which is usually Andrew [Fox] in the post. We also need to make sure to not get away from what’s working as the game progresses. A fair amount of the time, we end up stopping ourselves.” With these things in mind, the Yeomen will look to find success as the season progresses.