Men's Basketball Sets Historic Start With Win Over Rensselaer

December 30, 2009

Middlebury is off to its best start in school history after a 63-52 road win over Rensselaer to open the second semester. Tim Edwards posted a double-double of 16 points and 11 rebounds, as three other players added double-digits in points to lead the seventh-ranked Panthers in non-conference action at East Campus Arena. The Engineers fall to 6-2 on the season, seeing their four-game win streak snapped. Middlebury (8-0) returns to action with a home game versus Hamilton on Saturday at 4 p.m.

The Panthers opened up strong in the first half, going on a 17-0 run through the first eight minutes of the contest. Nolan Thompson sparked the run with six points, including a three-pointer. Rensselaer finally found its way onto the scoreboard at 11:32 on a jumper by Eric Anderson. The Engineers established momentum over the remaining minutes, cutting the Middlebury advantage to 28-20 at halftime. D.J. Blakemore led the way for RPI, posting eight points, while Edwards had seven points and six rebounds to pace the Panthers through the first 20 minutes of play.

Middlebury continued to press in the second half, building a double-digit lead through the first three minutes of action. Rensselaer cut the deficit to 34-28 on four consecutive free throw shots by Anderson, but a three-pointer by Edwards extended the Panthers' lead back to 37-28 at the 14:08 mark. The home team got as close as 40-36 with eight minutes remaining on a Blakemore layup. The momentum swung to Middlebury with a 10-1 spurt, for a 50-39 lead with 4:37 left in the contest.

After a bucket by Jeremy Bull at the 1:16 mark cut the Panther lead to 57-48, the Engineers were forced to foul. Middlebury responded, hitting 6/8 free throws down the stretch, including 5/6 by Jake Wolfin.

In addition to game-highs of 16 points and 11 boards, Edwards added a game-best five assists, while Ryan Sharry added 14 points and seven boards. Thompson and Wolfin each contributed 10 points. For Rensselaer, Bull had a team-high 15 points. Blakemore and Anderson each had 10 points, while Ricky Philatre had 11 rebounds.