SANTA CRUZ (1-2) – The Banana Slugs played their second game of their three game homestand at Kaiser Permanente Arena as they took on Skidmore College. The Banana Slugs used a strong second half effort as they defeated the Thoroughbreds 63-47.
Both teams won their last game. The Banana Slugs won 67-60 over Oberlin College in Santa Cruz on Saturday while the Thoroughbreds won 78-72 over Rochester Institute of Technology in Saratoga Springs on Saturday.
In the first half, the Banana Slugs would jumped out on a 6-2 spurt capped by a Ben Dorfman three pointer with 17:24 left in the first half. The Thoroughbreds would get back into the ballgame and would take the lead at one, at 18-17, on a Jack Byrne three pointer with 5:48 left in the first half. The Banana Slugs would then go on a 7-0 run, capped by a Corey Cilia three pointer with 3:28 left in the half, to take their largest lead of the half at 24-18. The Banana Slugs led 24-20 at halftime.
In the second half, the Banana Slugs would score the first two baskets of the half – both made by Tre Weston – to give the Banana Slugs an eight point lead, at 28-20, with 18:55 left. From that point, the Thoroughbreds would go on a 13-2 run, capped by a Royce Paris three pointer with 13:04 left, to give the Thoroughbreds a 33-30 lead. The three point lead was the largest of the ballgame for the Thoroughbreds. After Paris made a layup giving the Thoroughbreds a 40-37 lead with 10:15 remaining, the Banana Slugs would go on a 16-0 run, capped by a Weston layup with 5:06 left, to give the Banana Slugs a 53-40 lead. The Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the ballgame at seventeen, at 60-43, on a pair of Adam Marlow free throws with 2:15 left. The Banana Slugs won 63-47 for their second consecutive win.
Dorfman and Weston each had a game high fourteen points to lead the Banana Slugs. Edvinas Rupkus also had a game high fourteen points for the Thoroughbreds. Andrew Jones had nine points and three players (Cilia, Kyle Creighton and Tyler Klingenbeck) had seven points apiece for the Banana Slugs in the win. Aldin Medunjanin had thirteen points and Paris had eight points for the Thoroughbreds.
The Banana Slugs shot 41.7% (25-60) from the field, 33.3% (9-27) from the three-point line and was 66.7% (4-6) from the free throw line. The Thoroughbreds shot 32.7% (17-52) from the field, 13% (3-23) from the three-point line and 47.6% (10-21) from the foul line. UC Santa Cruz's defense forced sixteen turnovers by the Thoroughbreds scoring eleven points off the turnovers while the Thoroughbreds' defense forced eighteen turnovers by UC Santa Cruz and scored fourteen points off the turnovers. UC Santa Cruz outrebounded Skidmore 47-32 and the Banana Slugs had seven more points off the bench (19-12) than did the Thoroughbreds.
The next game for the Banana Slugs is next Tuesday as they take on NAIA member Pacific Union College at Kaiser Permanente Arena at 7 pm.