Stags Surge Late Past Kingsmen
By: Dante Quazzo
The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Stags (17-1, 6-1 SCIAC) battled back against a resilient Cal Lutheran (6-11, 2-5 SCIAC) team to pull out a 59-53 victory Saturday night at Ducey Wells Gymnasium. After being down 26-22 at halftime, the Stags took the lead midway through the second half and held off the Kingsmen for the win. The Stags were led by Tyler Gaffaney, who led the team with 13 points and five rebounds. Jack Grodahl added 10 points for the Stags, with a key 3-pointer down the stretch.
In the first half, Cal Lutheran jumped out to an early 11-3 lead behind the strong play of Xavier Walton, who finished with 17 points on the game. In the second half, though, Jayvaughn Nettles took over, hitting five three-pointers en route to a game-high 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the floor.
The Stags struggled shooting in the first half, connecting on only 24% of their field goals. That all changed in the second half, as CMS adjusted to the Cal Lutheran defense and shot 50% the rest of the way.
The Stags improve to 6-1 in SCIAC play, and stand alone in 1st place atop the conference. They'll travel to La Verne (5-13, 2-5 SCIAC) Wednesday to take on their conference foe Leopards before hosting the Whittier Poets (13-5, 5-2 SCIAC) on Saturday, February 4th. The Poets gave the Stags their only loss this season.
Meanwhile, the Kingsmen fall to 2-5 in the SCIAC, and will look to rebound on Wednesday against Whittier.