No. 13 WashU Men's Basketball Rally Falls Short at Central

No. 13 WashU Men's Basketball Rally Falls Short at Central

Pella, Iowa, Dec. 10, 2016 – The No. 13-ranked Washington University in St. Louis men's basketball team rallied from a 13-point second-half deficit but fell short in an 84-80 loss at Central College (Iowa) Saturday in Pella, Iowa.

Central improved to 7-1 with the win, while WashU fell to 6-2.

Junior Andrew Sanders scored 13 of his team-high 19 points in the second half to lead the Bears. He also added a career-high eight assists. WashU shot 50 percent (35-of-70) from the field, but connected on just 3-of-10 from the foul line. The Bears were also outrebounded 45-33.

WashU took a 16-7 lead early in the contest after putting together a 14-2 run. Sanders had all six of his first-half points during the run. Central bounced back with a 13-3 run to take the 20-19 lead with 9:54 left.

Junior Matt Highsmith came off the bench and nailed back-to-back jumpers, and then senior Michael Bregman canned a three to tie the game at 26-26. Bregman nailed his third three of the half to move in front 35-31, and then a jumper by Highsmith made it 41-33.

Central scored the final eight points to tie the score at 41-41 at the break. Bregman led all scorers with 13 points as WashU shot 57.6 percent (19-of-33) from the field.

Trashawyn Boyd's fourth three-pointer of the game gave Central at 49-45 lead, but WashU scored seven-straight points to make it 52-49. After a timeout by Central, Sanders scored on a lay-up to extend the run to 9-0.

WashU led 56-52 with 14:14 before going ice cold from the field, missing seven-straight shots. Central responded with a 12-0 run as the Dutch took the 64-56 lead. The Dutch extended the run to 19-2 to take a 71-58 advantage with 7:44 to play.

The Bears did not fold trailing by double figures, and a three-pointer by senior Clinton Hooks trimmed the lead to seven (73-66) with 5:12 remaining. He canned another three from the win to get the lead down to four (74-70).

Junior Jake Knupp cut the lead down to one after a put-back, and then he stole the ball on the ensuing possession and was fouled. He made 1-of-2 free-throws to tie the game at 77-77 with 1:04 to play.

Pete Walker gave Central the 79-77 lead with 49 seconds left after a jumper, and then he recorded a steal on the ensuing WashU possession. Walker nailed two free-throws with 12 seconds left to seal the victory.

Walker led Central with 20 points, as the Dutch connected on 11 three-pointers and hit 17-of-23 from the foul line in the win.  

Bregman (13 points), Hooks (13), junior Kevin Kucera (12), Highsmith (10) and junior David Schmelter (10) also scored in double figures for WashU.

WashU returns home to host No. 16 Illinois Wesleyan University (6-2) on Saturday, Dec. 17, at 7 p.m.

BEAR NOTEBOOK: WashU leads the all-time series with Central 4-1, and the teams met for the first time since the 1985-86 season … Sanders has scored in double figures seven times this season and went over 500 points for his career … Knupp had a career-high six steals, second most in a single game in school history … The Bears assisted on 24 of 35 field goals.