Mens Basketball

Menlo 87, San Diego Christian 75

Date of competition: Thursday, January 10, 2019

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Golden State Athletic Conference
at Menlo 87, San Diego Christian 75

By Ryan Barnett

It was a tale of two halves for Menlo College in Thursday's 87-75 victory over San Diego Christian. The night started all Hawks as they began the game on a 12-2 run. The Oaks cut the Hawks lead to seven by halftime and dominated the second half, eventually winning by 12. The Oaks improve to 5-9 and 1-4 in GSAC play while the Hawks fall to 5-9 and 1-4 in the conference.

Slow Start
It wasn't long after the tip that the Oaks found themselves in a double-digit deficit. Led by Tristan Angelo's five quick points, the Hawks jumped out to a quick 10-point lead. Menlo was able to cut into the lead behind hot play from John Paine and N'Jai LeBlanc. The two teams would trade blows throughout the entire first half, and San Diego Christian took a narrow seven-point lead into the halftime break, 43-36.

Second Half All About the Oaks
Menlo came out guns a-blazing in the second half. It took less than four minutes for the Oaks to tie the game at 47 as LeBlanc found Henry Cornelious for an open layup. Halfway through the second, the Oaks pushed their lead to double digits, behind a Petr Ropek layup, at 61-51. The Hawks crept within three but strong paint play and free throw shooting from the Oaks would eventually secure the victory.

A Look at the Numbers
The Oaks had five players in double figures tonight, headlined by Paine with 23. Behind him was Jeremiah Testa with 15, Cornelious with 13, and LeBlanc and Charles Neal each with 10. Paine also reeled in seven rebounds, and LeBlanc and Ross Williams each had three assists. The Oaks shot the ball at 52 percent to the Hawks 41 percent and narrowly beat out the Hawks 8-9 in the turnover battle.

Up Next…
Menlo has little time to rest, as they will take on the 15th ranked Vanguard Lions on Saturday night. The Lions are 16-1 on the season, after falling to the William Jessup Warriors on Thursday night. The Oaks only have one program win over Vanguard and it was in their last meeting a year ago in the GSAC tournament. Tip off is set for 4 pm inside Haynes-Prim Pavilion.

posted by Ryan Barnett on Jan 10, 2019 at 11:28 pm

Oaks junior John Paine. Photo courtesy of Menlo Athletics

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