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Men's Basketball ready for up-and-down affair

December 21, 2012

Senior Miles Bankston has fortified Wilmington's defense.

Senior Miles Bankston has fortified Wilmington's defense.

If you are a fan of up and down basketball, Saturday’s meeting with Heidelberg could be the game for you. The Wilmington men’s basketball team host the Student Princes at Fred Raizk Arena as both teams will look to turn the defensive pressure on each other for the entire length of the court. (Game Notes)

“The team that executes, takes care of the ball and rebound it will come in on the victorious side,” said Wilmington head coach K.C. Hunt.

Both teams are adept in taking the ball away as the rank first and second, respectively, in the Ohio Athletic Conference in steals. Led by junior Malcolm Heard II (Wilmington, OH/Wilmington), the Fightin’ Quakers are leading the league with 10.2 steals per game, while the ‘Berg is second with 9.67 steals.

Despite the frequency in creating miscures, neither team is extremely proficient in turning the takeaways into points. Heidelberg is fifth in the OAC with 73.4 points, while the Fightin’ Quakers are ninth with 67.8 points.

Heidelberg is on a four-game losing streak and has lost five of the last six games. The Student Princes are winless in Ohio Athletic Conference action.

“Heidelberg is an extremely talented basketball team,” said Hunt. “They have struggled a little in league action after a solid non-conference record.”

Senior forward Nate Davis had a string of four consecutive double-doubles come to an end in the last game. Davis is the only player in the league averaging a double-double with 17.6 points and 10.6 rebounds.

Wilmington is still searching for a third scorer after Heard and senior Brandon Candella (West Chester, OH/Lakota West). The duo is responsible for 41 percent of the team’s offense. Heard has reached double figures in eight of the team’s 10 games, while Candella has reached the feat in nine of 10 games. In the three instances in which either of them failed to reach at least 10 points, the Fightin’ Quakers are 1-2.

Getting a third scorer could be beneficial for Wilmington, but Hunt isn’t necessarily worried who it is.

“Obviously, your best players have to play well,” said Hunt. “We have a lot of capableWe have five, six guys that can get us 20 a night. Eventually we will have an identity. Our identity in January and February is different that we are now.”

Junior Klarke Ransome (Richwood, OH/North Union) is third on the team in scoring with 8.3 points per game, while sophomore Dwight Johnson (Dayton, OH/Jefferson) is fourth with 5.7 points.