CLAREMONT, CA. – The Pomona-Pitzer Men's Basketball team swept the regular season Sixth Street Rivalry with an 81-76 win over Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) rival CMS on Wednesday night at Roberts Pavilion.
Season Impact: With the win, the Sagehens improve to 15-4 overall and 9-2 in SCIAC play.
The Sagehens were led by a three-headed monster of senior James Kelbert, sophomore Matthew Eberle and senior Micah Elan. Kelbert led the scoring with 20 points and nine rebounds, Eberle turned out an incredible shooting performance from beyond the arc with 18 points and Elan notched a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds in the win.
Pomona-Pitzer and CMS had virtually identical numbers from the floor with CMS holding a slight advantage from the floor at 44.8% to CMS's 46.9% with both teams shooting 33.3% from beyond the arc. Despite being down two big men in the lineup, the Sagehens outrebounded the Stags 44-28, but CMS with a slight edge in the paint at 38-34.
The Sagehens started out slow on offense as they missed on their first six trips down the floor that allowed CMS to jump out to an early 6-0 lead. The Sagehens got things going on offense and took over the lead at 9-8 and grew that lead to 15-11 and forced CMS to take the first timeout of the half with 9:26 left to play before halftime.
CMS fought back and tied the game at 20-20 after the Stags converted a free throw from the line. The Sagehens and Stags went on to trade leads for the next few possessions but some hot three-point shooting by the Stags gave them a 28-23 lead with 5:24 left before halftime. Pomona-Pitzer battled back and regained the lead late in the first half, but a last second foul gave the Stags a chance to tie the game at the free-throw line as the two teams went into halftime tied at 31-31.
After a good display of defense in the first half, the Sagehens and Stags turned up the scoring in the second half that saw a combined 95 points between the two teams. The Sagehens fell behind two start the second half but then sparked a good run of offense during the early stages of the second half and took a 55-46 lead at the 12:02 mark after a three by Eberle. Despite the Sagehens hot shooting, the Stags kept the lead within reason and battled back to cut the deficit to a one possession game at 55-52 to force Coach Katsiaficas into a timeout with just under 10 minutes remaining.
The Stags got the game to within one possession a few times down the stretch, but Pomona-Pitzer stayed strong from the free throw line and was able to hold off CMS on the road to walk away with the Sixth Street Rivalry sweep.
Up Next: The Sagehens will next travel to SCIAC opponent Redlands on Saturday, February 8th at 5:00 p.m.