Red Hawks Hold Off Titans In Second Half

Dylan Wurtz marked 14 points and three rebounds for the Titans
Dylan Wurtz marked 14 points and three rebounds for the Titans

Andy Popp tallied 31 points on 77 percent shooting during Ripon College's 66-53 victory over UW-Oshkosh on Friday (Nov. 16) in Wisconsin Dells.

Connecting on 10 of his 13 field goals, Popp also hit 5-of-6 tries from three-point range. He drained all six of his attempts at the foul line and totaled a game-high five assists. Ripon (1-0) used another strong individual performance from Taylor Koth, who booked 13 points and 14 rebounds.

The Titans (0-2) trailed by eight with 11 minutes remaining. Josh Hopfensperger (So. • Neenah) then hit a jumper and sank a lay-up to tighten the gap. With 8:23 on the clock, Dylan Wurtz (Jr. • Kimberly) drove to the hoop and tied the score at 43.

Popp converted lay-ups on his next two possessions to go back on top. He tacked on a jumper and a triple with five minutes to go that made it a 54-48 cushion. The Red Hawks put the game away by scoring their last eight points on free throws.

Ripon finished with 42 percent (21-50) shooting from the field, including 8-of-20 success behind the arc (40 percent). The Red Hawks held a 16-4 advantage in free throws made, knocking down 89 percent of theirs compared to the Titans' 44 percent.

UW-Oshkosh was held to one basket, a Jake Royston (Jr. • Wisconsin Dells) jumper, in the first six minutes of the contest. Meanwhile, Koth scored two free throws and Jake Cull drilled a three-ball to lead, 9-2.

The margin expanded to 19-6 when Popp tallied the final five points of a 7-0 run. The Titans bounced back with a 10-3 spurt that featured deep jumpers by Wurtz and Cory Nickel (Jr. • Waupun). Royston's two free throws with 7:11 on the clock made it 22-16.

Popp let a three-pointer fly just before the first-half horn, and he swished it for a 32-23 lead. UW-Oshkosh came out strong in the second period with six unanswered points. The Titan defense held Ripon scoreless for the first 4:35 of the half.

Royston and Wurtz each finished with 14 points. Andre Wallace (Fr. • Sun Prairie) topped the team with nine rebounds, in addition to his seven points. Sam Mageland (Sr. • Appleton) compiled three assists.

The Titans marked 40 percent (22-55) shooting overall, with 5-of-19 makes from long distance (26 percent). Ripon College held a substantial advantage in rebounds with a 40-26 figure.

UW-Oshkosh stays in Wisconsin Dells for a game against Edgewood College on Saturday (Nov. 17).