SPRINGFIELD, Ohio-- Wittenberg Men's Basketball defeated number 21 in the nation Washington University-St. Louis to be crowned the 2015 Charles B. Zimmerman Memorial Classic Champions. The Tigers were sharp on both ends of the court from the tip, controlling the tempo of the game until the final buzzer.
The Tigers defense caused Washington to shoot 36-percent from the floor and only 20-percent from behind the three-point arc. While Wittenberg's defense was a focal point, the Tigers offense showed flashes of greatness Wednesday night, led by Jaelin Williams (Springfield, Ohio/Shawnee) tallying 24 points and Cody Phillippi (Xenia, Ohio/Xenia) adding 13. When the final buzzer sounded, Wittenberg emerged victorious, 72-61.
- Wittenberg started the game on a 16-4 run, highlighted by the offensive combination of Garrett Dorfman (Durham, North Carolina/Northern Durham) and Phillippi.
- At the break, the Tigers took a 34-31 lead into the locker-room after shooting 44-percent from the floor in the first-half.
- Shane Edwards (Perrysburg, Ohio / Perrysburg) had all nine of his points in the first half in route to All-Tournament Team Honors.
- The game was back and forth for most of the second-half, until the Tigers began to pull away, capped off by a Alex Fultz (Cincinnati, Ohio/Glen Este) three-pointer to push the lead to 59-49 with five minutes remaining in regulation.
- Williams stepped up and was all over the court in the second-half, scoring 17 of his 24 points down the stretch.
- Along with Williams' outburst, Phillippi came up clutch at the end of the game, nailing all of his free-throws, putting the game out of reach for the Bears.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Wittenberg outrebounded the Bears 45-33 on their way to being crowned Tournament Champions.
- Edwards was all over the court in the tournament, pulling down 12 boards and adding two steals.
- Dorfman scored in double-digits in back-to-back nights for the first time in his Wittenberg career.
- The Tigers enjoyed 11 points off of turnovers while their bench helped the cause adding 18 more points,.
- The largest lead of the game went to Wittenberg, as the Tigers offense pushed the Bears to a 15 point deficit.
- Wednesday's championship was nothing short of action packed, as the game featured four ties and two lead changes before the final buzzer.
FROM THE BENCH
- "It's all about making the next step and I believe you can make that leap by beating a top 25 team… The rebound differential is something I am ecstatic about, especially at this point in the season," said Head Coach Bill Brown.
- Wittenberg returns to NCAC play Wednesday, January 6, at home against Ohio Wesleyan University.
Written By: Kuris Duggan