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Corban Runs Away From Wildcats of Portland Bible in Season Opener
Written by Mark Colachico    Wednesday, 06 November 2013 16:51   


SALEM, Ore. – In the official season opener for Corban University, the Warriors ran away from the visiting Wildcats of Portland Bible College with a 24-14 run in the first half en route to earning a 91-53 victory Tuesday inside the C.E. Jeffers Sports Center.

"It feels good to have that first counter out of the way, as the guys were anxious to pound on someone other than a teammate," said Corban's second-year head men's basketball coach Steve Masten. "We played pretty well offensively, as we had 22 assists on 30 field goals and we shot almost 50% from the three-point line. We felt a lot better about that and the way that we executed. A better performance all-around by the guys on the floor today and I'm proud of them for that."

Corban (1-0) was led offensively by preseason all-conference selection Jordan Carter with a game-high 21 points on 9-for-11 shooting from the field that included a 3-for-4 performance from beyond the three-point line, while Caleb Herzberg made his collegiate debut with 20 points off the bench thanks to a 6-for-11 shooting night that included a 5-for-8 showing from long distance. The Warriors' Josiah Sebens and Toby Roth also scored in double figures with 12 and 11 points, respectively, while England native Aaron Withe pulled down a game-high tying six rebounds to go along with a game-high five assists each by Roth and Carter.

"Coming off my knee injury that I suffered during the preseason, I've been really eager to come out and play. I wish I could have played last week against Oregon State, but I was getting up a lot of shots during practice and I guess that it really helped," said Herzberg about his collegiate debut. "I felt good about my performance, but I'm more proud of the team and how we played. I saw the chemistry between the guys and can tell that we are going to have a great season."

Portland Bible (3-3) got 12 points from Jeremiah Ridgeway, while James Hill added 11 points for the Wildcats. Raymon Taylor chipped in with six points and a game-high tying six rebounds, while six different players dished out one assist each.

Corban would begin the game by scoring the first five points before the Warriors extended their lead to eight points (15-7) on back-to-back free throws by Roth with just over 14 minutes on the clock. Portland Bible would pull within five points (15-10) thanks to a mini 3-0 run before Corban used the aforementioned run over a span of 10-plus minutes to increase its margin to 15 points (39-24) on a three-pointer by Caleb Dozier with 3:03 on the clock. After a three-pointer by Portland Bible's Taylor Pettiford, Tyler Edwards capped the first half scoring with an old-fashion three-point play in the final minute to secure a 15-point halftime lead (42-27) for the host Warriors.

The second half would begin with Corban using a 16-5 run over the opening five-plus minutes to build a 26-point lead (58-32) on a Herzberg three-pointer with 14:23 on the clock. The Warriors would continue to apply the offensive pressure, as Corban slowly increased its lead to 40 points (87-47) on a three-pointer by Edwards with 3:26 left. Over the final three-plus minutes, Corban's lead would not drop below 38 points as Michael Garrett scored his first collegiate points via a pair of free throws with 19 seconds left to put the Warriors back ahead by 40 points (91-51). Two Portland Bible free throws with 1.5 seconds left would cap the game's scoring, as Corban earned its fourth season-opening win in the past five seasons and second straight to open a new campaign.

Overall, Corban shot a combined 30-for-59 (50.8%) from the field that included a 12-for-25 (48.0%) performance from beyond the three-point line and a 19-for-21 (90.5%) showing at the free throw line. The host Warriors hit an amazing 8-of-14 (57.1%) shots from beyond the arc in the first half, as Corban knocked down 15-of-29 (51.7%) field goals over the opening twenty minutes. On the other hand, Portland Bible was a combined 15-for-46 (32.6%) from the field, 3-of-14 (21.4%) from long distance, and 20-of-27 (74.1%) at the charity stripe in the game.

Coach Masten, who was returning to the college game for the first time since the end of the 1997-98 season, talked about his pregame thoughts by saying, "It feels great to be back and I'm really happy to be out here. I was thinking about (my return) today, as I was coming out to the school because it is my first home game at Western Baptist/Corban in 15 years. I'm excited to be back with a great coaching staff that has great team work between each other. I'm excited to be back at Corban in a time when things seem to be moving in a positive direction. I'm just happy to be a part of it."

Corban will return to the hardwood this weekend at the Menlo Tip-Off Classic in Northern California, as the Warriors open the tournament on Friday, November 8th, against host Menlo College beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Atherton, California.

 

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