Marshalltown, IA -- The Iowa Western men's basketball team withstood a furious second half barrage by the hosting Marshalltown Tigers to capture a valuable 77-70 road conference victory Wednesday evening (1/23/19).
It truly was a tale of two halves in virtually every aspect, as the Reivers played tremendous basketball on both ends of the floor in the game's opening 20 minutes of play. Behind a defensive effort that held Marshalltown to just 10 points in the games first 12 minutes of play, the Reivers streaked out to a commanding lead. By the conclusion of that first half, the traveling team from Council Bluffs had doubled-up the hosting Tigers 48-24.
Then came the second half of play. Marshalltown showed no lead is safe, especially on the road; in ICCAC Conference play as they began to slowly climb back into contention. Behind Kelton Edward's game high 28 points, the Tigers started to gain confidence and drew back within single digits with 8:24 to play. From that moment on the game began to look like a race to the finish. The Reivers steadied themselves a bit, but Marshalltown continued to chip away; and with 2:15 to play finally tied the contest at 68 all.
With everything having gone against the Reivers in the game's second half, and a fever-pitched crowd sensing an improbable home comeback; Iowa Western undeterred; refused to give up the lead. In a game that only had one lead change, way back at the 14:10 mark of the first half, the Reivers were not about to let there be another; as they showed true grit and began to mount a final scoring run of their own. Iowa Western scored 9 of the games final 11 points to secure the road conference win and reclaim the victory that seemed so sure much of the contest.
Four Reivers scored in double figures. Travon Broadway led the Reivers with 20 points. Caleb Huffman (16pts), Boubacar Diakite (14pts), and Emmanuel Ugboh (10pts) rounded out the other double figure scorers. Christian Bentley once again led the Reivers in assists, including key decision making late during the game's decisive stretch run. Ugboh collect another double-double with his 10 point - 10 rebound efforts.
With the win the Reivers move to 18-3 overall, and 2-1 in ICCAC Conference play. Up next for Iowa Western is a visit from Indian Hills this Saturday evening (1/26/19). Tip time between the Reivers and Warriors is slated for 7:00pm at Reiver Arena.