Grizzlies bounce back with 81-66 win over Johnson & Wales
Lee, Wilson combine for 42 in Grizzlies' final non-conference tilt
ALAMOSA, Colo.— Led by Shayar Lee’s (Phoenix, Ariz.) game-high 22 points and another 20 from Deray Wilson (Anchorage, Alaska), in the starting lineup for just the second time this season, the Adams State College men’s basketball team completed the non-conference portion of their schedule with an 81-66 win over the visiting Johnson & Wales (Colo.) University Wildcats, Sunday evening here in Plachy Hall.
Lee, who matched his season and career-high for points, finished the night 7-for-13 from the field and hit three of the Grizzlies five 3-pointers while Wilson also made seven field goals (on 20 attempts). He also added a career-high matching six assists and four steals as the Grizzlies recorded 14 total steals while forcing the Wildcats into 20 turnovers.
Senior Seth Heinbaugh (Prescott Valley, Ariz.), also had a solid effort finishing with 14 points, six rebounds and a game and career-high five steals.
Meanwhile, the Grizzlies were guilty of just 11 miscues, equal to their fewest this season, and improved to 14-4 overall and to a perfect 4-0 in non-conference play.
JWU, paced by 15 points from Jazz Williams, dropped to 9-14. Jake Campbell and Nick Maly were also in double-figures for the visitors, finishing with 14 and 10 points, respectively.
The Grizzlies led the game wire-to-wire as they bounced back quickly from Saturday’s heartbreaking 78-75 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference set-back to Fort Lewis.
The Grizzlies were able to get to the line 38 times and scored 26 of their points from the charity stripe, a 68.4 percent success rate. Meanwhile, JWU struggled a bit missing on 10 of 21 attempts from the line while shooting just 52.4 percent from the stripe.
Lee, who had 14 points at the break, scored the game’s first two baskets in 45 seconds before the Wildcats tied the game for the one and only time with a 6-2 run of their own.
However, the Grizzlies immediately responded with an 8-0 spurt and eventually built up as much as a 12-point lead in the first half.
The Wildcats were down 42-32 at the break and kept the deficit between 10 and 15 points for the first 10 minutes of the second half before the Grizzlies went on a 12-0 run over 2:19 building a 68-45 edge, their largest of the day with two Heinbaugh free throws at the 8-minute mark.
The Grizzlies missed just one shot in that stretch and received back-to-back 3-pointers from Heinbaugh and Lee forcing the Wildcats to use a timeout.
The Wildcats would get to within 16 thanks to a 9-2 run, highlighted by a Ethan Evenson trey with 6:34 left, but would get no closer as a the Grizzlies closed out the win, their eighth in 10 home contests this year.
The Grizzlies finished the evening shooting 45.5 percent (25-55) from the field and held JWU to a 25-for-59 (42.4 percent) floor shooting effort.
After going 3-1 during their 2-week home stand, the Grizzlies will now head south for a 2-game trip to New Mexico facing New Mexico Highlands and Western New Mexico on Friday and Saturday, respectively. The Grizzlies then return home for another 4-game stretch starting Feb. 11 against UC-Colorado Springs.
Friday’s game with the Cowboys, which will tip-off at 8 p.m., will be especially meaningful as the Grizzlies, 10-4 in RMAC play, currently hold a half-game lead over NMHU (14-5, 10-5 RMAC) for fourth place in the RMAC standings. The top four teams at the end of the regular season will earn the right to host a RMAC Shootout Quarterfinal.
All of the Grizzlies’ games can be heard live on KSPK-FM (104.1 in Alamosa) and via the internet at www.kspk.com.