WILLIAMSTOWN, MA -- Behind James Wang's 23 points, the Ephs rolled to a 95-60 victory over MCLA this evening. The win moves the Ephs to 4-0 on the season; MCLA is now 1-2.
The game was back-and-forth until the Ephs were able to assert their dominance with just over six minutes to play in the first half. With just over seven minutes to play, Chris McLaughlin sunk a three from the left corner to pull within three of the Ephs. At that point, the score was 27-24. From that moment forward, however, the Ephs became unstoppable. They went on a 12-0 run that included six points from Wang.
The Ephs held the Trailblazers to only three field goals in the final seven minutes of the half, two of which came in the final 32 seconds. Overall, they held MCLA to 42.9% shooting in the half. The Trailblazers were powered by Jon Greenberg, who had 13 points in the half. He went 5-for-6 from the line in the first 20 minutes – but 0-for-3 from the line in the second half.
The Ephs started the second half with the same fire that they showed at the end of the first. The highlight for the Trailblazers, however, did come on the defensive end. The Ephs came up with the ball and passed ahead into what looked like an easy breakaway; Greenberg, however, hustled back and came up with a big block.
Off the bench for the Ephs, Sean Hoffmann made a lot of noise. He entered the game with a little over two minutes to play and immediately made his presence known. With 2:14 to play, he came out of nowhere and had a huge block. In addition, he went 4-for-4 from the line and added a bucket as well to finish with 6 points. Coach Mike Maker commented on Hoffman after the game: "Sean is a very good athlete. He's bouncy. We're excited about Sean as he continues to develop."
The Ephs did not have as many threes as they have in the past three games instead choosing to score with jump shots and inside the paint. Said Coach Maker after the game, "It's important to be able to win in a variety of ways. Our offense is not a 3-point offense; it's reading the defense. [Giving us points inside] is how they chose to guard us… That's what they were showing today."
Greenberg had a double double for the Trailblazers with 21 points and 12 rebounds. Jamal Brown was the only other Trailblazer in double-digits with 12 points. The Trailblazers had a 37.7% field goal percentage.
Coach Maker commented after the game: "It's always a big game following a holiday – whether it's Thanksgiving or Christmas. We handled ourselves much better than last season. We were ready to play and eager, and we played team basketball." He went on to say that the coming week was going to be "tough" and that "four games in seven days will be a big test for us." The Ephs' next game will be at RPI on Tuesday evening. Game time is 7:00.