DPU tops rival Wabash 60-49

Thursday, January 10, 2013
DePauw junior Michael Wilkison attempts a floaters over Wabash freshman Daniel Purvlicis in the rivalry game on Wednesday. (Banner Graphic/GRANT WIEMAN)

As long as there are no large pieces of out-of-date locomotive equipment at stake, DePauw University seems capable of playing well against rival Wabash.

That showed with a 60-49 win in men's basketball on Wednesday.

DPU (9-5) trailed 24-20 at the half, then went on an 11-2 run to open the second frame.

Freshman Adam Botts and sophomore Connor Rich each hit a three-point bucket to spark the second-half run.

"That's kind of our strength. We have a lot of guys who can shoot the ball," DePauw coach Bill Fenlon said. "We shot it better, but that was the result of better ball movement."

The Tigers shot a scorching 56 percent from the floor in the second half, mostly from outside shooting.

No one on DePauw scored in double figures. The scoring was spread almost equally between starters (34) and bench points (26).

"The ball was really kind of sticking on one side of the floor a lot in the first half," Fenlon said. "We really tried to emphasize at halftime to stop holding it and staring and just ... move it."

Senior Barry Flynn led the Tigers with seven rebounds.

Wabash opened the game with a 17-11 lead, working the offensive glass with eight boards on that end in the half.

DPU couldn't get a foothold on the boards, and momentum, until after the break.

"Our objective (offensively) was to work the ball to at least three sides of the floor to get the defense moving," Flynn said, "and then to keep moving it and wait for the defense to break down and seize the opportunities they provided us."

Following the scoring spree to start the half, the DePauw defense stepped up.

The Little Giants shot just 34.6 percent after the break.

Fenlon said he believes his players came out excited to play against their rival school and once the adrenalin settle down, they were able to get back to execution.

"I felt like in the first half we didn't do a good job defensively at all, even though they only had 24 points," Fenlon said. "Because (playing Wabash) is a bigger deal to other people, it becomes a bigger deal to the players ... I'm happy that they're excited to play, but they can't be so excited that they can't execute. I don't think we really executed well in the first half in a lot of the things we were doing, and that could be a result of that."

The two schools square off each fall in the Monon Bell Classic football game, but the rivalry carries over to hoops as well.

Wabash has won the last 4 football games, but DePauw has now won two of the last three games on the hardwood.

"They fought us tough; they always do, but it's nice to get a home win against them," Flynn said.

The Tigers play again at Wooster at 3 p.m. Saturday.

At DePauw
Wabash 24 25 -- 49
DePauw 20 40 -- 60

Individual scoring
Wabash: Purvlicis 6-8 4-8 16, Nicksic 5-10 5-5 15, Sponsler 2-13 3-5 7, Hawn 2-6 0-0 5, Wagner 2-2 0-0 4, Burton 1-2 0-0 2, Hodges 0-5 0-0 0, Kammrath 0-0 0-0 0, Surenkamp 0-0 0-0 0, Walsh 0-4, 0-0, 0.
DePauw: Botts 2-6 3-4 9, Johnson 3-4 3-4 9, Wilkison 4-11 0-0 8, Rich 3-7 0-1 8, Haggin 3-5 0-0 7, Burns 3-5 0-0 6, Flynn 2-6 1-2 5, Fernitz 2-3 0-0 4, Patton 1-2 2-2 4, Dillon 0-0 0-0 0, Sustarsic 0-0 0-0 0, Fey 0-2 0-1 0.

Team scoring (three-pointers)
W 18-55 (1-16) 12-18 49, D 23-51 (5-15) 9-13 60.

Rebounds (offensive)
W 32 (11), D 34 (8)

W 10, D 10

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