Redlands Men's Basketball Falters to No. 11 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps
Despite a final fury of three-pointers, the University of Redlands men's basketball team fell short of the upset against the No. 11 Stags of Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges on Saturday. After trailing by one at the break, the Bulldogs struggled to slow down the Stags' 60% shooting spree in the second period and suffered a 65-75 defeat in Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) action.
During the opening frame, the Stags jumped out to an 11-point lead by the 9:02-mark when junior forward Kevin Sullivan drained a three-pointer.
Following a timeout, the Bulldogs responded with a 16-6 run to finish out the half down by only one point at 29-30. During this stretch, senior center Jack Colston (Dana Point, CA) and sophomore guard Matt Calhoun (Clackamas, OR) stepped up with buckets from beyond the arc.
After a back-and-forth start to the second stanza, the Stags surged out to a 49-39 lead with 8:39 to go in the game. While primarily making free-throws, CMS made that a 15-point advantage with 2:32 left on the clock.
Nonetheless, Redlands refused to go away as senior guard Mychal Estrada (Redlands, CA) uncorked nine points on a pair of long balls and three free-throws in the final minutes. Senior forward Stephen Call (Portola, CA) also knocked down a three-pointer to give the Bulldogs hope.
But Redlands was forced to foul and CMS simply did not waver at the line, going 31-for-40 on the night with senior forward Mani Maceira converting all 16 of his opportunities during the game. Maceira led all scorers with 24 points.
Calhoun finished with a career-high 18 points in his first start of the season. Colston added 15 points and six rebounds, while Estrada chipped in 11 points.
Besides Maceira, CMS (21-1, 9-1 SCIAC) gained double-digit scoring from sophomore guard Tyler Gaffaney with 18 and graduate student forward Chris Blees with 16.
Statistically, the squads were evenly matched in most categories, with the Stags holding a slight shooting advantage at 44.2%, compared to Redlands' 37.3% showing.
With the loss, Redlands sits fourth in the conference with a one-game lead over Cal Lutheran University. The Bulldogs need to maintain or improve their position to advance to the SCIAC Postseason Tournament, which takes place on Fri., Feb. 24, and Sat., Feb. 25.
Redlands (11-11, 6-5 SCIAC) heads to the University of La Verne for a 7:30 p.m. bout with the Leopards on Wed., Feb. 15.