With two players delivering powerful performances, the DePauw Tigers men's basketball team moved to 6-2 on the season with a convincing 77-66 win over visiting Kenyon Wednesday.
Senior big man Stephen Schott recorded a team-high 22 points, 19 of which came in the first half, and collected a game-high nine rebounds. Schott recorded his near double-double as the Tigers enter their longest layoff of the season. Head coach Bill Fenlon believes the confidence boost will help his big man continue his strong senior season.
"It was probably his best game of the year," Fenlon said. "He touched it a little bit more and he's better when he has more opportunities. The guy is a two-time All-Conference player, this is what he's supposed to do for us."
Mike Moore was DPU's other big performer of the night as he put up a monster second half. Moore scored 19 points and dished out nine assists in the game. With his nine assists, Moore moved past Brett Crist into fourth place in career assists at DePauw. The highlight of the night for Moore was his called three ball even before the leather left his fingertips. Moore connected on two from long range.
Brian Oilar and freshman Steve Lamasters also scored in double figures with 11 points each. Lemasters also hauled in eight rebounds and continues to impress his coach and fans alike.
"Eight rebounds. That's a pretty good days work off the wing. We thought he would be pretty good; he's been better than we thought he was going to be. He's a guy who you just can't leave open," Fenlon said.
DePauw held an 11-point advantage at the half but saw its lead dwindle down to just four in the first few minutes of the second half.
Quick buckets from Oilar and Moore extended the Tigers lead back to nine with 13:31 to go in the game.
With their team on the ropes, Kenyon's bench was cited for a technical. Lemasters went to the line and converted one freethrow increasing DePauw's lead to 16.
The Lords played catch-up for the remainder of the game, with DePauw converting its final four points at the line.
After the game, the focus once again fell on the defense. Fenlon acknowledged his team has made strides in this area, but it still needs to focus on improving. Concentration is the aspect Fenlon zeroed in on when analyzing his team's defense.
"Some of the mistakes we make are about angles, scouting and all sorts of different things that, frankly, take more concentration than we're able to give it sometimes," he said. "We're screaming and yelling about it, we're talking about it all the time and we're trying to make it a big deal. I feel like we're doing some things defensively that are a little bit better but that's the area we need to continue to improve on.
"We're going to have nights where we are not that productive on offense, we're going need to do a much better job on the defensive side," Fenlon commented.
The Tigers are a young squad and getting the underclassmen mentally prepared for the collegiate game is something Fenlon and his coaching staff is working diligently on. For some it's an easy adjustment, for others, the change will take some time.
"It's a slow process. The big thing for those guys is whether they will hang in there and get themselves ready to go," Fenlon said. "The good thing is they can look at Tom (Callen) and say look what happen to him."
Callen, a starter on this year's squad, saw extremely limited action his freshman season, but put in the time and effort in the off-season to position himself to be able to fight for the starting job.
"A lot of guys they won't hang in for that amount of time that it takes. There's always that risk that it might never happen but it certainly not going to happen if you don't hang in there. I like them all. I think they can be pretty good," Fenlon concluded.
The Tigers will next be in action at the Tampa Bay Shootout at 5 p.m. Dec. 29 against Case Western Reserve.
Kenyon 29 37 -- 66
DePauw 40 37 -- 77
Kenyon -- Kodey Haddox 25, Korey Haddox 18, Knapke 9, Yelvington 6, Yorlano 3, Jolson 3, Bediako 2.
DePauw -- Schott 22, Moore 19, Lemasters 11, Oilar 11, Callen 7, Werntz 5, Bergfeld 2.
3pt. FG -- Kenyon 6 (Kodey Haddox 4, Yorlano, Jolson), DePauw 7 (Moore 2, Lemasters 2, Oilar, Callen, Werntz).
Next game -- The Tigers will next be in action at the Tampa Bay Shootout at 5 p.m. Dec. 29 against Case Western Reserve.