When Central Christian College’s men lost to Kansas Wesleyan in the second basketball game of the season at Salina, the Tigers felt like that was a game they let get away.
They didn’t let the rematch get away here Tuesday.
The Tigers were in a good offensive rhythm for most of the night as they sprinted to a 95-79 decision to record their 10th win of the year against five losses and they’ve enjoyed good success against the KCAC schools.
“We didn't have a great start to the game, but I was proud of the way we responded the second half,” CCC coach Tony Romero said. “We were pretty undisciplined defending in the first half, we fouled a ton. Our bench did a good job giving us solid minutes during that stretch. At half, we were shooting 60 percent and you would hope that would translate to a bigger lead at the break, but fouling and a lack of focus defending the paint hurt us.”
Things were much better after the break.
“The second half, I thought we settled down and defended with a lot more focus and passion, that allowed us to push the pace in transition a little more,” Romero said. “Offensively, we did a great job executing and getting shots we wanted throughout the whole game. I thought Daniel (Nwosuh) did a great job and had one of his better games of the year tonight, we are going to need him to play well down the stretch for us to be successful."
Smooth-shooting Michael Gholston fired in 28 points to lead the Tigers and Nwosuh stepped up in a big way with 21. Jubril Osagie (16) and Sam Clayborn (11) also were in double figures. The 3-ball was essential for the Tigers as they made a sizzling 11 of 20 in the game.
Ryan Hill led KW with 26 points. CCC did a terrific job defensively on Coyote big man Jacob Lunz, holding the 6-8 post to 3 points.
The Tigers are home Thursday to play Crowley’s Ridge College, with game time set for 7:30 p.m.
Central (95) — Gholston 28, Nwosuh 21, Osagie 18, Clayborn 11, Burton 7, Kuminga 6, Warren 4.
Kansas Wesleyan (79) — Lunz 3, Edwards 2, Hill 26, Gandy 8, Johnson 14, Fulton 4, Ellis 8, Gillard 3, Sylvester 6, Neri 2, Criswell 3.
• BETHANY WOMEN 74, CENTRAL 47 — The Central women also hosted a KCAC school on Tuesday and showed the rust of a month layoff against a Bethany team that entered the game having won just three times.
Central made just 3 of 27 shots in the first half to dig itself a big hole.
Abbie Banks and Kelsey Grimaldo scored 15 points apiece for the Tigers. Samirah Miller led Bethany with 17 points, Sydney Ahaneku added 16 and 11 rebounds, while Samm Ashida scored 14.
Central is now 6-7 on the year and hosts Crowley’s Ridge on Thursday. Bethany hosts Saint Mary in its return to KCAC play the same night.
Central (47) — Banks 15, Grimaldo 15, Gonzalez 6, Hearne 5, Glessner 4, Floyd 2.
Bethany (74) — Lindshield 6, Ashida 14, Miller 17, Favors 1, Meinke 4, Chiles 3, Ahaneku 16, Peters 7, Giebler 2, Burdick 4.