After the season almost ends on a last-second free throw, the Webster University men’s basketball…
Webster men’s basketball scores 100 to rebound from season’s first loss
The Webster University men’s basketball team cracked triple digits on the scoreboard for the first time since 2005 in a 100-84 win over the Rust College Bearcats (Miss.) on Sunday, Nov. 18 at Grant Gymnasium.
“Triple digits is always fun,” senior guard Dietrick Sooter said.
The win came on the heels of a 78-68 loss to the Sewanee Tigers (Tenn.) the night before in the Cavallo Classic. Coach Chris Bunch said Webster did a better job of making the open shots and creating plays in the Nov. 18 game versus the Nov. 17 game.
“It was two really different games,” Bunch said. “I think the difference in the two — we talked about it last night after the game and this morning before the Rust game — is you’ve got to focus, you’ve got to concentrate for 40 minutes and make plays.
“Sometimes, making a play may be a loose ball and you just picking it up and throwing up the floor to some guy, and yesterday we were kicking those up in the bleachers. We’d make a nice move and miss the layup. That doesn’t do you any good.”
Saturday, Nov. 17 was the season and home opener for the Gorloks. At halftime, Webster trailed 35-22 to the Tigers. Even as Webster picked up the offense to pull within five points in the second half, the Gorloks eventually fell to Sewanee. Senior guard Cody Bradfisch led Webster in points with 13. Sophomore guard Ahmad Smith registered 12 points and led the team with 31 minutes played. Sooter said the team felt down after the loss.
“We didn’t come out and play like we should have,” Sooter said. “We pretty much lost it in the first 10 minutes. … We weren’t focused yesterday (Nov. 17).”
Webster shot 27.3 percent from the 3-point line against Sewanee, compared to 50 percent against Rust the next day.
Sooter said “big stops and big shots” contributed to the Gorloks’ rebound victory.
“We kept fighting with them in the post,” Sooter said. “We knew they weren’t very good 3-point shooters. Rebounding was key, and the free throw shooting … we were 31 for 39 tonight (Nov. 18), and that was huge.”
Sooter led Webster in the Nov. 18 game with 25 points, which tied a Webster career high. Three other Gorloks — Bradfisch, Smith and senior forward Roman Robinson — all contributed 17 points to Webster’s win.
Bunch said the team’s emotions rose after the win, which improved Webster’s record to 1-1 on the young season.
“They were excited that they had shot it well and played better,” Bunch said. “Like I say, it’s a good thing to get a big win like that. Rust is a good team.”
Next up on Webster’s schedule is the Spalding University Blue & Gold Classic in Louisville, Ky. The Gorloks will take on Cincinnati Christian University, 2-4 record, on Friday, Nov. 23 at 5 p.m. Webster will then play Asbury College (Ky.), 5-1 record at press time, on Saturday, Nov. 24 at noon. Sooter said the Gorloks need to work on defense for their upcoming games.
“We’ve got to get stops,” Sooter said. “We can’t score 100 points every night. We’ve got to get stops in order to win games.”
Bunch reflected the team’s need to improve defense, but also added rebounds into the mix.
“We’re not doing really well defensively yet,” Bunch said. “We’ve got to continue to focus on our rebounding, although we’ve done a good job this weekend of rebounding for our lack of size. We just need to continue to keep trying to do the little things. That’s something we need to continue to work on.”