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Strong Efforts Off The Bench Help Titans Defeat Warriors

Ben Boots converted 10 of 12 free throws en route to a career-high 22 points against the Warriors.
Ben Boots converted 10 of 12 free throws en route to a career-high 22 points against the Warriors.

Ben Boots had a career-best 22 points off the bench to lead the UW-Oshkosh men's basketball team to an 88-81 victory over Wisconsin Lutheran College on Saturday (Nov. 21) in Kolf Sports Center.

Boots made 5 of 9 shots from the floor and 10 of 12 tosses from the free throw line in 24 minutes played.

UW-Oshkosh's Alex Olson had a game-high five assists and a season-high 19 points on 5-for-8 shooting from the field and 8-for-8 from the foul line.

Kyle Bolger chipped in a season-best 12 points for the Titans, who also received eight points and four rebounds from AJ Mueller.

UW-Oshkosh (1-2) ended the game shooting 46.6 percent (27-58) from the field, including 55.6 percent (15-27) in the first half. The Titans converted 28 of 36 free throws for a .778 rate and held a 36-30 advantage in rebounds.

Wisconsin Lutheran College shot 50 percent (32-64) from the floor, including 53.3 percent (16-30) during the first period.

The Warriors hit 10 of their first 13 shots from the field to open up their largest lead of eight points at 25-17 with 11 minutes remaining in the first half. Wisconsin Lutheran College's Jake Jarnigo had 14 points in the opening nine minutes of the contest as the Warriors connected on their first five 3-point attempts.

Trailing 34-27 with 5:13 left in the first period, UW-Oshkosh closed the period with a 17-4 run to take a 44-38 lead at the intermission. A jumper by Mueller knotted the score at 34 at the 3:22 mark, and the Titans never trailed for the remainder of the game. Consecutive layups by Bolger gave the Titans a 38-34 advantage with 2:32 to go.

The Warriors rallied to tie the game on two occasion during the second half. A 9-2 run pulled Wisconsin Lutheran College even at 74 on a jumper by Jarnigo with 2:37 to play, and a basket by Christian Kennedy tied the score at 76 with 1:58 remaining.

The Titans reclaimed the lead for good at 78-76 on a pair of free throws by Olson, who then sank a 3-pointer for an 81-77 lead at with 65 seconds to play.

UW-Oshkosh converted 7 of 8 free throws over the final 39 seconds, including 5 of 6 shooting from the charity stripe by Boots.

Jarnigo led all players with 25 points for Wisconsin Lutheran College. He made 10 of 17 shots from the field and added a team-leading six rebounds.

The Warriors' Tanner Schieve and Collin Kennedy tallied 16 and 14 points, respectively.

Wisconsin Lutheran College (1-2) received 13 points from its reserves, while UW-Oshkosh had 41 points off the bench. Seven Warriors and 11 Titans entered the scoring column.

The Titans have won their last three games over the Warriors, including victories of 111-85 in 1992 and 100-74 during the last previous meeting in 1994.

UW-Oshkosh closes out a three-game home stand against Edgewood College on Tuesday (Nov. 24) in Kolf Sports Center.