WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The Williams College Ephs (1-0) defeated the Worcester. St Lancers (1-2) 70-51 in the opening game of Williams' Tip-Off Tournament on Friday evening.
After taking a four point lead into the break, the Ephs outscored the Lancers 42-27 in the second period, led by Jovan Jones' 11 points on 5-7 shooting. The game was the first of the season for the Ephs, while the Lancers came in having played two already.
Cal Howes began the scoring, burying a three-pointer 1:03 into the game. The game remained a defensive battle, with the Lancers holding a 16-12 lead midway through the first half. Kevin App called the first timeout of the game with 8:49 remaining in the half and the Ephs trailing 20-12. Dion had the first bucket following the timeout, with his basket stretching the Worcester St. lead to nine points, their largest of the game.
Williams would then close out the first half on a 18-4 run, which was led by Matt Karpowicz's six points. After struggling to convert for the majority of the first half, a Karpowicz jump shot for the Ephs with 7:13 left in the half quickly followed by a Ryan Moon layup cut the deficit to seven.
Both teams maintained quality defense, with a scoring drought lasting from Moon's basket until Karpowicz sunk a shot inside with 2:51 remaining. That basket sparked an Ephs surge, in which Williams missed no shots from the floor the rest of the half. The run was capped off by two steals from Jones, and saw the teams go into the locker room up with the Ephs up 28-24.
Dion led all scorers at the half with an efficient 10 points on 4-5 shooting. Howes was close behind his teammate with seven points, as he also added 12 rebounds. For the Ephs, Henry Feinberg contributed eight points, while Karpowicz added six.
A key scoreboard differential at the half came came from the charity stripe: The Ephs converted on 6-13 free throws, while Lancers did not see any opportunities from the line. The Ephs shot 2-16 from downtown in the half, while Worcester was 4-14.
Williams continued their quick pace to begin the second half, as a Jones and-one extended their lead to double digits 2:36 into the half.
Zion Hendrix cashed in from deep with 10:32 to go, halting a Williams streak with the first field goal for the Lancers in over five minutes. Dion then sunk a three of his own to break the 1,000 point mark for his collegiate career, just three games into his senior season. The basket cut the Williams lead to 11.
The Ephs continued their increased offensive intensity inside for the duration of the contest, scoring 42 points in the paint to the Lancers' six, which ultimately proved enough to take home the win. Still, the Lancers never let the Ephs build a commanding lead, and maintained strong play on both sides of the ball throughout the duration of the matchup. ""We just talked about settling down and playing at a better pace. Once our pace picked up, we started putting up better shots," said App.
Dion led all players with 18 points, including four baskets from deep. Howes had a double-double for the Lancers, with 13 points and an impressive 20 rebounds. The Lancers shot 11-32 (34.4%) from the field.
Karpowicz, Jones, Feinberg, and Spivy all reached double figures for the Ephs, with 14, 13, 11, and 10 points, respectively. Jones was lethal on defense, racking up five steals. Karpowicz led the Ephs in rebounds with 11, joining Howes with a double-double.
The victory marked App's 100th career win as a head coach at Williams. "Just incredibly grateful to work at Williams. I'm way more happy for this year's team to be 1-0 than I am to hit 100 wins," said App.
The Lancers move to 1-2 on the year with the loss. They will take on Colby-Sawyer in the consolation game of the Tip-Off Tournament Saturday, November 16 at 2 p.m.
The Ephs start the year 1-0, and will face off against SUNY Poly Institute in the final on Saturday at 4 p.m.