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Basketball wins season opener: Men defeat Webster College at home on Saturday, cleaning up game play

November 21, 2014

Kimarri Campbell / The Courier - Junior Nick Marema looks for an open teammate at the first game of the season against Webster.

Last Saturday was the start of a new season for the Fighting Scots men’s basketball team as they took on Webster University.

From Freshman Will Jones’s first three pointer, to the 16-6 run at the end, the Scots were in control the entire time leading to a 67-49 home win.

The Scots are projected to finished seventh in the Midwest Conference based on the preseason coaches’ poll after a trying year last year. The team had an overall record of 6-17, but took it as a learning experience going into a new season with new players and a new dynamic.

“Last season we were young and we learned some tough lessons through the course of that year,” Head Coach Todd Skrivseth said.

This season, the Scots are still young with only one senior and eight freshmen listed on the varsity roster. One of those freshmen, Will Jones, made an impact in the home opener as he scored 11 points. He was one of four Scots to score double digits as they all followed junior Andrew Mathison’s lead of 13 points for the game.

The big men, Mathison and junior Ben Friday combined for 23 points as the Scots doubled up Webster in the paint, outscoring them 16-8 down low. The Scots shot 46% from the field in the opener while holding Webster to just 37%.

Turnovers hurt the Scots the most as they committed 22 of them, which has been a point of emphasis this year.

“We’ve all been working hard on taking care of the ball and not committing turnovers because that was a big problem we had last year and that has been our main focus, cleaning things up,” Friday said.

They have a little way to go, but the turnovers didn’t seem to affect them against Webster.

Monmouth also struggled in finished games last season, holding several leads at half time but squandering them in the second half of games.

In the home opener, the Scots finished strong with a 16-6 run in the final eight minutes. The win over Webster was the first season-opening win since 2010.

The Scots hit the road for three away games in a row, but will return home on Dec. 3 to face rivals Knox College.

Kimarri Campbell / The Courier - Junior Matt Juhola passes to another player. The Scots shot 80% for free throws as a team.

David Beuttel
Contributing Writer

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