February 20, 2013
By -, -
IRVINE, Calif. -- The Concordia (Calif.) Eagles, defending NAIA National Champions, are far from finished in 2013. After blowing back-to-back first half leads last week on the road, the Eagles built another double-digit first half lead against No. 6 Westmont (Calif.) on Tuesday night and held serve in the second half, beating the Golden State Athletic Conference Regular Season Champion Warriors, 93-61.
Dakota Downs led CU with 23 points on 11-of-15 shooting and 13 rebounds, his 11th double-double of the season. Peter Smith scored 18 and Tim Harrisscored 11, battling foul trouble all night. Concordiagot contributions from all over, especially reserve guard Alex Rudd, who went three-of-five from three, scoring 14 points, his second highest point total this season.
Concordia outrebounded the Warriors 37-33, and held the hot shooting team to four threes. Concordia was relentless on defense, forcing 28 turnovers, for 18 CU assists. Concordia shot an effective 50% from the field.
Concordia jumped out to a 14-7 lead as Harris hit a three and Rudd converted a three-point play and layup. WC cut it to five, 18-13, at the 13:17 mark, but CU was just gearing up for their run. The Eagles went on a 13-3 run with four points from Harris, a tip-in from Brandon Hucks, and three from Rudd to lead 31-15 with 9:49 left. Westmont cooled the run and CU led 37-22 at the 6:03 mark. Concordia scored seven of the next 11 and finished the half with a three from DeLaun Frazier and layup from Downs to lead 59-33 at the break. Concordia got easy buckets as turnovers turned into ball movement and layups.
"I was happy to see our guys show some killer instinct, that's been missing lately," Concordia head coach Ken Ammann said. "I thought our effort was outstanding tonight."
Concordia came out and matched every Westmont basket blow-for-blow through the first ten minutes of the second half. Concordia scored eight straight with the score 72-48 to lead 80-48, capped by a three-point play from Downs. The Eagles kept coming, as Smith dialed home a three at 4:33 to give CU a 35-point edge, their largest of the game, 89-54. CU finished it off, 93-61.
Concordia won 33-14 off turnovers, 48-28 in the paint, 14-5 in second chance points, 13-6 in fastbreak points, and 31-20 in bench points.
CU improved to 17-10 and 6-7 in the GSAC, while WC fell to 23-6 and 11-2, after wrapping up the GSAC Regular Season Championship on Saturday.