Balanced Bears bounce back against LW

COLUMBIA, Ky. — The Shawnee State University men’s basketball team put together a well-balanced performance en route to a strong bounceback victory against host Lindsey Wilson.

Isaac Abergut posted career-highs in a SSU uniform (17 points and nine rebounds), E.J. Onu and James Jones combined for 27 points and 13 rebounds, and the Bears held the Blue Raiders to 0-of-21 shooting from three-point range — all coming in a 66-47 victory on Saturday evening in a Mid-South Conference contest.

Shawnee State, which improved to 5-2 and 2-1 in the MSC, posted 17 assists on its 28 field-goal makes — and outrebounded Lindsey Wilson (3-3, 1-2 MSC) by a 43-35 margin en route to the win.

The Bears, which led for 38 of the game’s 40 minutes, held the Blue Raiders to 18-of-58 shooting (31-percent) to set the needed tone.

Abergut shows off savvy game

A promising hooper who has only improved since coming to the United States from Australia in 2018, Abergut parlayed his success at Miles (Mont.) into an opportunity to play at Shawnee State.

Against Lindsey Wilson, Abergut showed off his fluid game that made him a coveted junior college transfer, scoring seven of Shawnee State’s first 11 points to get the Bears off and running.

The Melbourne, Australia product ultimately posted 12 points and four rebounds in the opening half of competition, while going an efficient 5-of-9 from the field over the same span.

Then, with Lindsey Wilson down by eight (50-42), he hit a massive three-pointer with 6:34 remaining to help put the game out of reach.

His 17 points were also a game-high and his nine rebounds added to the junior’s most impressive performance to date, all coming on high efficiency as evidenced by Abergut’s 7-of-13 shooting mark — including his 3-of-7 from long range.

Jones, Onu continue to produce

As they have done all year long, Onu and Jones made their impact felt not only in the scoring column, but in the overall flow of the contest itself.

Following up on Abergut’s hot start, Onu and Jones took over the middle third of the contest — scoring 17 consecutive Shawnee State points between them from the five-minute mark of the first half to the 15-and-a-half minute mark in the second half.

Onu, who went 5-of-9 from the field, finished with a 14-point, six-rebound, two-block line — while Jones, who went 6-of-12 from the floor, finished with 13 points and seven rebounds to join Abergut in double figures.

Balance, efficiency staples in SSU win

Behind the main trio, Shawnee State’s overall involvement, activity level and efficient play proved to be huge.

Kobie Johnson, who finished with nine points and three assists in 11 minutes, scored five points midway through the first half to help SSU increase its lead to double figures — a lead that remained throughout the majority of the affair.

Donoven Carlisle came up huge late, posting a team-high 11 rebounds to go along with two steals — aiding SSU’s strong defensive efforts while also adding nine points on 4-of-8 shooting.

Lastly, Abergut and Johnson, along with Jakiel Wells, took excellent care of the basketball — with each player posting at least a 2.33-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio or better.

The trio ultimately combined for 13 assists to just five turnovers, posting a strong 2.6-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio as a trio.

Next up

Shawnee State is scheduled to return home to face Martin Methodist on Thursday (Dec. 10) at 8 p.m. inside the confines of Waller Gymnasium.

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