Men's Basketball: Koch Erupts For 21 Points To Lead Second Straight Victory

Men's Basketball: Koch Erupts For 21 Points To Lead Second Straight Victory

PASADENA, CA. – The Pomona-Pitzer Men's Basketball Team shook off the rust in the first half to pull through a 67-55 road victory over Caltech on Wednesday night, earning their second straight win in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Sagehens offense shot 49 percent from the field and the defense held the Beavers to 39 percent shooting.

Season Impact: The victory propels the Sagehens to a 4-9 record overall and 2-2 in the SCIAC.

Junior Corbin Koch led the Sagehens in scoring, putting up 21 points from the field and going 8-for-11. Micah Elan also put in a decent performance, scoring 15 points with five assists and five rebounds. Alex Preston had his first career double-double, scoring 10 points with 10 rebounds and swatting three shots. The Beavers' offense was led by Marcus Gee who put up 25 points while Alex Andrews put up nine points and grabbed eight rebounds.

The Beavers opened up the game with a 9-0 run to take a 9-1 lead in the first half, but the Sagehens' offense showed up with 15:18 remaining in the half thanks to an and-one layup from Elan. Preston then had an impressive run, grabbing an offensive rebound off Adam Rees' miss and scoring the putback. On the Hens' next possession, Elan dished a pass to Preston in the paint who then leapt to the rim for a dunk, cutting the lead 9-8. However, the Sagehens' offense struggled to find their rhythm while the Beavers responded with a 7-2 run to build a 16-10 lead. With 9:52 remaining, Koch sparked another run, muscling for a layup to ignite a 10-0 run as the Hens took a 20-16 lead. The two teams traded baskets, but the Beavers managed to chip away to a 28-27 lead at halftime.

Pomona-PItzer's offense found its fluidity in the second half thanks to Koch's hot shooting, hitting a three-pointer off a pass from Elan to take a 33-32 lead. Elan forced a turnover on the following play and threw an outlet to a racing Koch who laid it in to make it 35-32. Koch capped off his run with a jumper to take a 37-32 lead with 15:58 left in the game. The Beavers struggled to catch up with the Sagehens throughout the second half, unable to put on a significant run due to the Hens' stingy defense. With 11:54 left in the game, Caltech's Spencer Schneider went up for a layup, only to see his shot swatted away by Preston to protect the lead. James Kelbert gave the Hens their first double-digit lead with 9:39 remaining with a jumper off a pass from Preston to make it 50-40. Marcus Gee gave the Beavers a glimmer of hope, hitting a big three-pointer with 4:55 left to cut the Hens' lead to single digits, 56-48, but Koch retaliated with an open triple off a dish from Daniel Rosenbaum. With less than a minute left, Elan closed the door with a midrange jumper to make it 67-55 and followed up with a block on Bret Johnson to seal the game.

Up Next: The Sagehens will host SCIAC opponent Cal Lutheran on Saturday, January 6 at 2:00 PM.