George Fox takes three of four
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — After a disappointing home loss in its season opener, the George Fox men's basketball team ripped off three wins in a row last week.
That included a pair of wins over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps and Pomona-Pitzer to kick off a weekend road-trip to California, but the Bruins came back to earth a bit Monday in a 94-88 loss to California Lutheran.
George Fox (3-2) shook off its 83-80 home loss to Rutgers-Newark last week by demolishing Gallaudet 110-78 at home Nov. 21.
The Bison stayed close in the early going, but back-to-back three-pointers by Mason Green-Richards and Thomas Rico put the Bruins up 32-18 with 10:23 remaining in the half.
Galludet, a university at which all programs and services are specifically designed to accommodate deaf and hard of hearing students, got the lead down to seven points with 5:47 to go before the break, but George Fox went on a tear to close out the half.
The Bruins went on an 11-3 run to push the advantage to 18 points and eventually entered halftime with a 60-39 advantage after shooting 62.6 percent from the floor and making eight of its 19 three-point attempts.
It was more of the same in the second half, as GFU added another eight triples and shot 60 percent for the game. Green-Richards and Rico paced the effort with 23 points apiece, with Kevin Dent (15), Isaac Lee (12), Ryan Lacey (11) and Johnathan Doutt (10) all scoring in double figures as well.
Green-Richards and Rico kept it up on Friday to help the Bruins throttle Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 91-73 on the road.
The game followed a similar pattern to the win over Gallaudet, as GFU ripped off an 13-0 run late in the first half to take a 52-36 lead into the break.
The Stags, which entered the season ranked No. 15 by d3hoops.com but have since dropped out of the top 25 after an 0-4 start, got the lead down as low as 12 in the second half, but the Bruins maintained control at both ends of the court to coast to a comfortable win.
George Fox wasn't quite as hot as they were in their previous outing, but went on a blistering 13-for-24 pace from three-point range and closed out the game by limiting CMS to four field goals over the final eight minutes.
Rico hit seven of those treys to finish with a team-high 29 points; Green-Richards added 24 points and five rebounds.
The Bruins had to work much harder Saturday night, as they went to overtime at Pomona-Pitzer before prevailing 96-90.
The contest was tight throughout, with the Sagehens taking a 41-40 lead after the first 20 minutes.
A Rico jump shot gave George Fox an 80-78 lead with 26 seconds remaining, but Micah Elan answered for Pomona-Pitzer with a jump shot at the other end with three seconds left to force overtime.
The Sagehens (0-5) scored first in overtime, but the Bruins then scored seven straight points to take control.
The lead was down to three until Rico nailed a triple to put GFU up 93-87 with 1:04 to play and the Bruins closed the game out at the free-throw line.
Rico poured in a career-high 36 points and Green-Richards finished with 22, making it his fourth consecutive game with 20 or more points. Dylan Hamlett added 15 points after going 12-for-12 on free throws.
George Fox shot 50 percent from the field in the first half Monday evening at Cal Lutheran (2-1), but still found itself trailing 50-41 at halftime. The deficit got as big as 16 points late in the second half before the Bruins mustered a final charge over the final three minutes.
Starting with a 9-0 run, GFU got as close as five points with 53 seconds remaining, but could not make a field goal the rest of the way and fell 94-88.
Freshman point guard Jackson Januik led the Bruins with 18 points, Ryan Lacy put up 17 and Rico and Green-Richards had 16 apiece in the loss.
George Fox will begin Northwest Conference play Friday at Linfield (5-0) before traveling to play Willamette (2-1) Saturday night.