The Iowa Wesleyan University men?s basketball team traveled to Carlinville to take on Blackburn College in today?s SLIAC matchup. The Tigers had a tough test ahead of them as the Beavers entered the day in the top spot of the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference standings.
Both teams shot 50 percent from the field in the first half of action, but Iowa Wesleyan had the advantage from the three-point line. The Tigers shot 53.8 percent from the arc compared to just 31.3 percent by the Beavers. The difference in three point shooting helped IW stick with Blackburn. At the half, IW trailed by just five points of the SLIAC leader.
The Tigers cooled down from behind the arc in the second half, but they still managed to have an advantage over the Beavers. Iowa Wesleyan shot 57.7 percent from the field and 66.7 percent from the free throw line in the second half. Blackburn struggled from the free throw line, shooting just 33.3 percent from the charity stripe. IW forced the Beavers into 23 turnovers in the game, and they were able to finish off a late charge to pick up their first win of the season.
Four Tigers reached double figures in the 88-85 win. Mitch Drey and Brock Butler carried the majority of the load for IW. Drey finished with 24 points on 10-16 from the field, and Butler had 29 points with five three-pointers and 10-12 shooting from the free throw line. Jarryd Fernandes and Camron Mack were the next two in double figures. Fernandes recorded 12 points and six rebounds, while Mack added 10 points off the bench for the Tigers.
Iowa Wesleyan will return to action on Tuesday, December 19th. They will travel to St. Cloud, Minnesota to face off against St. Cloud State at 7:30 p.m. The Tigers are 1-9 overall and 1-3 in conference play this season.