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College Basketball

Westmont Men Turn Up Intensity in 2nd Half, Beat Vanguard

A 56-point second half powered Westmont  past the Lions of Vanguard, 89-59, in a GSAC men's basketball game at Murchison Gym on Saturday

Freshman Ben Okhotin led the scoring for Westmont with 18 points and was 5-8 from behind the arc.

“We played a very mediocre to average first half," Westmont coach John Moore said. "We found our legs and each other in the second half. I was really pleased with two guys that came off the bench and played with great energ,  Ben Okhotin and Noah Blanton.” 

Westmont, a 47.8 percent team, shot 38.7 percent in the first half and still led by a score of 33-28 going into halftime.

The Warriors (16-4, 6-1 GSAC) opened the first seven minutes of the second half on a 23-5 run. Vanguard  (13-9, 3-4 GSAC), committed its seventh team foul with 16:52 remaining in the half, putting Westmont in the bonus for the remainder of the game. Vanguard finished with 19 personal fouls in the second half alone. 

The Warriors were 29-36 (80.6%) from the free-throw line.

“I thought our composure was much better in the second half," Moore said. "We attacked the rim in the second half. One of our goals is to make more free throws than our opponent attempts and tonight we achieved that.

Westmont led by as much as 33 in the game, allowing Moore to use his bench in the last 10 minutes. Gage Shelmidine, Matt Ramon, Tristan Lloyd, Maxwell Hudgins, and Brandon Jones all had minutes in tonight’s conference matchup. 

Westmont’s 6-1 Golden State Athletic Conference record puts them in second place at the halfway point of conference play.

“Finishing the first half of conference play 6-1, being one game out of first place,and having played the top teams at a pretty high level, I think it gives us a lot of confidence,” said Moore.

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