Solid Second Half Leads to Big Victory in Home Opener | Schools
CLINTON, Iowa--Behind 24 points from sophomore guard DeAndre Lowery Jr. and a 20-point effort by senior Vesteinn Sviensson, the Ashford University basketball team picked up a 90-61 victory over Faith Baptist Bible College on Saturday afternoon inside Kehl Arena.
Phoenix, Ariz-native Kevin Gray and freshman forward Tim Huber also added 14 and 10 points, respectively to help improve Ashford to 2-0 overall during the early portions of the 2012 season.
"Vesteinn and DeAndre did a great job as the two veterans playing the way we want our team to play," Head Coach Oliver Drake said. "They did a great job offensively and defensively and they both played really solid today."
After a slow start, in which Faith Baptist jumped out to a 7-1 lead during the first three minutes of play, the Saints rallied and blasted out on a 9-0 run to take a 10-7 lead with 15 minutes remaining before halftime. The Eagles returned blows to take the lead on two more occasions shortly after, but once Ashford took control, it wouldn't relinquish it.
The Saints rolled out to a largest advantage of 12 during the first half before holding a 46-35 lead at the halftime horn.
Lowery led Ashford with 16 points at the intermission while Gray added 11 and Sveinsson chipped in 10. As a team, AU shot 54.5% (18-of-33) from the floor while committing just three turnovers but were outrebounded 19-13, including a 6-2 clip on the offensive glass.
Following the break, AU's depth and offensive firepower helped extend its lead as the team polished off a 90-61 win.
"I thought we did a good job in the second half establishing defense," Drake continued. "We didn't focus on the little things in the first half – making extra passes, rebounding, etc. – and really played as individuals versus letting the game come to us. I'm glad we came out in the second half and played the way we wanted to play."
Ashford concluded the contest by shooting 47.9% (34-of-71) from the floor while converting 76.5% (13-of-17) of its free throw attempts. Committing just eight turnovers, Ashford outrebounded FBBC 40-34 and handed out 20 assists as a team.
Eagles' guard Tyler Betz led all scorers with 38 points on 16-of-31 shooting from the field.
Up next, the Saints continue a four-game homestand on Tuesday when Benedictine University-Springfield visits Clinton for a women's/men's basketball doubleheader. The men's game is