Basketball ‘Cats win MEC opener at Wheeling Jesuit, 78-60


WHEELING – The West Virginia Wesleyan Bobcats snapped a nine-game losing streak to the Wheeling Jesuit Cardinals here Saturday with a dominant 78-60 win in the Mountain East Conference opener for both teams.

Wesleyan landed four players in double digits in the victory as Dusan Vicentic scored 18, Luka Petrovic and Fred Brondsted tallied 16 apiece and Clay Todd scored 12.

Petrovic just missed a double-double as he added nine rebounds.

Two days earlier, the Bobcats lost a non-conference road clash to Ohio Valley, 72-58.

“It was a great performance and team win,” remarked Bobcat head coach Jack Meriwether after the Wheeling Jesuit win. “I felt like we got away from how we play and what our identity is against Ohio Valley. Wheeling Jesuit is one of the toughest places to win in the MEC, but our guys bounded back and really played our way at both ends of the court.”

Wheeling Jesuit took an early 8-5 lead after five minutes of action, but Vicentic turned in an old-fashioned three-point play and Petrovic went inside for a pair of lay-ups to treat Wesleyan to a 12-8 lead at the 13:39 mark in the first half.

It was a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

Up 15-13, Todd capped off a 9-0 Wesleyan run that gave Wesleyan a 24-13 advantage with 8:39 left in the first half.

A trey by Petrovic gave Wesleyan their biggest lead of the first half, at 30-16, with 6:49 showing on the first-half clock.

Wesleyan maintained a 10-point lead at the break, at 36-26.

The Bobcats came out in the second half and controlled the tempo and play of the game.

At the 10-minute mark of the second half a Jalen Melvin jumper pushed Wesleyan’s lead to 55-38 and then they extended their advantage to 24 points on a Brondsted lay-up at the 5:16 mark for a 68-44 lead.

A Todd three-pointer kept the Wesleyan advantage at 24, at 78-54, with 2:01 left in the contest.

With Meriwether emptying his bench, Wheeling Jesuit scored the final six points of the game for the final of 78-60.

Wesleyan was hot from the floor the entire game shooting 55.6 percent.

The Bobcats went to the line just nine times but made seven of them for a 77.7 percentage.

Wesleyan committed just eight turnovers in the win.

Wheeling Jesuit was led by Franck Kamgain who scored 15 points.

Wheeling Jesuit shot the ball at a 34.5 clip hitting on 20 of their 58 field goal attempts.

“Wheeling Jesuit is a young, but very talented and well-coached team,” Meriwether stated. “They have been inconsistent at the defensive end, but they are very strong offensively. It says a lot about our guys that we were able to hold them under 35 percent shooting from the field and at 32 percent from the three. We take a tremendous amount of pride in our three-point defense and going back to the Marshall exhibition game, our opponents are now just 29 percent from the three-point line.”

It was a different story for Wesleyan against Ohio Valley as the Bobcat offense struggled shooting just 35.9 percent from the floor.

The game started out well enough for Wesleyan as Brondsted and Todd each nailed a three-pointer for a 6-0 lead and they built that lead to 10, at 23-13 on a Vicentic jumper at the 7:30 mark of the first half.

Ohio Valley though countered with a 14-0 run over the next five minutes of the game to grab a 27-23 lead.

Ohio Valley led 30-28 at the break.

The hosts started the second half on an 11-2 run for a 41-30  lead and Wesleyan was never able to get back into the game after that.

Ohio Valley built a 19-point lead, at 51-32, with 11:47 left in the game.

A dunk by Dedan Williams Jr. brought Wesleyan to within 11, at 58-47 with 3:29 remaining, but Wesleyan couldn’t get any closer.

Todd paced the offense with 13 points while Brondsted tallied 11 points.

Vicentic added eight points and nine rebounds.

Dylan Harrison scored a game-high 16 points for Ohio Valley.

The split left the Bobcats a 3-1 record overall and a 1-0 record in the MEC.

“In men’s basketball, the MEC is as tough and deep as any league in the country, and we don’t take any win for granted,” Meriwether said. “To go on the road and handle a game like that against the reigning tournament champs shows how good this team can be when we fight to play our style of game. We need to keep playing that style to make some noise in the MEC.”

The Bobcats will return to the court today when they host nationally-ranked West Liberty in their home opener.

The game will tip-off in Rockefeller Center at 7:30 p.m.

The boxscores:

West Virginia Wesleyan   28  30 – 58

Ohio Valley                         30  42 – 72

West Virginia Wesleyan 58

Clay Todd 5-11 2-2 13, Fred Brondsted 4-13 0-0 11, Dusan Vicentic 4-15 0-0 8, Luka Petrovic 1-6 0-0 3, Marcus Larsson 0-3 0-1 0, Daylin Lee 3-5 1-1 8, Braeden McGrew 3-4 0-0 8, Dedan Williams Jr. 3-6 0-0 7, Jalen Melvin 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 23-64 3-4 58.

Ohio Valley 72

Dylan Harrison 6-14 0-0 16, Ty Dobson 5-11 2-2 15, Christian Alley 5-10 4-5 14, David Adeyemo 4-9 0-2 8. Kenneth Miller 1-1 4-4 6, Parker Black 2-7 2-2 7, Kavon Swoope 2-4 0-2 6, Samuel Vanadia 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 25-56 12-17 72.

Three-point field goals – West Virginia Wesleyan: Fred Bronsted 3-10, McGrew 2-3, Todd 1-5, Petrovic 1-4, Williams Jr. 1-4, Lee 1-2, Melvin 0-1, Larsson 0-2, Vicentic 0-4. Totals 9-35; Ohio Valley: Harrison 4-10, Dobson 3-7, Swoope 2-4, Black 1-4. Totals 10-25.

Rebounds – West Virginia Wesleyan: Vicentic 9, Petrovic 6, Brondsted 4, Todd 3, Williams Jr. 3, Larssonn 2, McGrew 2, Melvin 1, Team 6. Totals 36; Ohio Valley: Black 9, Adeyemo 8, Dobson 6, Harrison 3, Alley 3, Miller 3, Swoope 3, Team 4. Totals 39.

Assists – West Virginia Wesleyan: Vicentic 5, Petrovic 3, Todd 2, Brondsted 2, Larsson 1, Melvin 1. Totals 14. Ohio Valley: Black 4, Alley 3, Miller 3, Dobson 2, Swoope 2, Harrison 1, Adeyemo 1. Totals 16.

Steals – West Virginia Wesleyan: Todd 6, Vicentic 3, Brondsted 1, Lee, Williams Jr. 1. Totals 12; Ohio Valley: Harrison 2, Alley 2, Adeyemo 1, Miller 1, Black 1. Totals 7.

Blocks – West Virginia Wesleyan: Vicentic 1. Total 1; Ohio Valley: Adeyemo 4, Harrison 1, Miller 1. Totals 6.

Personal fouls – West Virginia Wesleyan: 21; Ohio Valley 12.

Turnovers – West Virginia Wesleyan: 14; Ohio Valley 14.

West Virginia Wesleyan   36  42 – 78

Wheeling Jesuit                 26  34 – 60

West Virginia Wesleyan 78

Vicentic 8-13 1-1 18, Petrovic 7-9 0-0 16, Brondsted 5-12 3-3 16, Todd 5-11 0-0 12, Lee 2-4 3-5 8, Williams Jr. 1-2 0-0 3, Larsson 1-2 0-0 3, Melvin 1-1 0-0 2, Edward Flohr 0-0 0-0 0, McGrew 0-0 0-0 0, Jaret Mullooly 0-0 0-0 0, Adam Horton 0-0 0-0 0, Tommie Pope 0-0 0-0 0, Anthony Garcia 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 30-54 7-9 78.

Wheeling Jesuit 60

Franck Kamgain 5-12 3-9 15, Steve Cannady 4-11 0-0 11, Brendan Hoban 3-14 1-1 10, Tariq Woody 3-7 2-2 8, Jay Gentry 2-9 2-3 7, Zach Collins 2-3 1-1 5, Mguel Rodriguez 0-1 2-2 2, Jeremiah April 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 20-58 11-18 60.

Three-point field goals -- West Virginia Wesleyan: Brondsted 3-8, Petrovic 2-3, Todd 2-5, Vicentic 1-4, Williams Jr. 1-2, Lee 1-1, Larsson 1-1. Totals 11-24. Wheeling Jesuit: Cannady 3-8, Hoban 3-10, Kamgain 2-4, Gentry 1-4, Collins 0-1, Rodriguez 0-1. Totals 9-28.

Rebounds – West Virginia Wesleyan: Lee 7, Vicentic 4, Williams Jr. 4, Petrovic 3, Brondsted 2, Garcia 2, Todd 1, Flohr 1, Team 4. Totals 28; Wheeling Jesuit: Gentry 9 Woody 8, Kamgain 6, Cannady 4, Hoban 3, Collins 1, Rodriguez 1, April 1, Team 3. Totals 36

Assists – West Virginia Wesleyan: Petrovic 9, Brondsted 4, Todd 3, Vicentic 2, Flohr 2, Williams Jr. 1, McGrew 1. Totals 22; Wheeling Jesuit: Gentry 5 Cannady 3, Kamgain 2, Hoban 2, Collins 1, Rodriguez 1. Totals 14.

Steals – West Virginia Wesleyan: Petrovic 4, Todd 2, Vicentic 1. Totals 7; Wheeling Jesuit: Kamgain 2, Cannady 1, April 1. Totals 4

Blocks – West Virginia Wesleyan: Vicentic 3, Petrovic 1, Lee, Melvin 1. Totals 6; Wheeling Jesuit: Cannady 1, Woody 1. Totals 2

Personal fouls – West Virginia Wesleyan: 17; Wheeling Jesuit: 9.

Turnovers – West Virginia Wesleyan: 8. Wheeling Jesuit: 12


Video News
More In Sports