January 5, 2014
Santa Clarita, CA -- Korey Anderson poured in a career-high 25 points and The Master's College blistered the nets during a season-best shooting performance in a 92-83 victory over Simpson Monday evening on Bross Court.
The victory snapped a two-game losing skid and lifted the Mustangs to 4-8.
It didn't take Anderson (Clovis, CA) and his teammates long to get going as the senior forward scored the game's first points on a layup 30 seconds into play and then the club reeled off runs of 5-0 and 7-0 over the next five minutes to go up 16-10 with 14:15 left in the first half. Evan Jenkins (Los Angeles, CA) capped the first burst with a three-pointer and Russell Byrd (Los Angeles, CA) duplicated that on the back end of the second one.
However, it would take more than that for the Mustangs to create any type of lasting separation as the Red Hawks proved to be rather pesky. A Chris Patureau (Houston, TX) trifecta at the 10:44 mark gave the Mustangs a 29-22 lead and a Byrd jumper 1:37 later made it a 31-23 game.
70 seconds later, that lead was gone as the Red Hawks buried three straight three-pointers to go up by one. Back came the Mustangs, though, in a half highlighted by runs. Fueled by a Travis Divita (Canyon Country, CA) three-pointer, the Mustangs countered Simpson's long-distance barrage with their own as Reid Shackelford (Murrieta, CA) capped off a 9-0 run with consecutive treys for a 40-32 margin with 5:25 remaining in the stanza.
They didn't stop there, either. After the Red Hawks snapped the Mustang skein with a basket,TMC tore off eight more points in a row, ignited by what else, a three-pointer. Patureau's second trifecta was followed by an Anderson three-point play and a Shackelford layup that ballooned the margin to 48-34 at the 1:23 mark. During a half in which the Mustangs drained eight shots (8-13) from behind the arc, senior guard Logan Quinn (Little Rock, AR) finished off his team's scoring with another long distance bomb, sending the Mustangs to the locker room ahead 51-39.
Over the opening 20 minutes, the Mustangs sizzled from the field, shooting at a 67% (20-30) clip with Anderson (11), Byrd (11), and Shackelford (10) combining for 32 points.
The Mustangs were nearly as accurate in the second half but it was their defense that made the difference over the final 20 minutes. First, though, the offense continued to roll over the first 3 1/2 minutes when the club hit four of its first five shots en route to a 61-41 advantage. Using a variety of post moves, Anderson keyed an 8-0 run to build that margin with six straight points.
The difference reached a game-high 21 points (66-45) on Patureau's final three-pointer of the game with 14:26 remaining. However, the Red Hawks, seemingly left for dead, scored 10 of the game's next 12 points in just over 90 seconds to vault back into contention, slashing the deficit to 68-55 at the 12:16 mark.
As they had done all evening, though, the Mustangs answered back, using a Shackelford three-pointer and four points from Jenkins to build the advantage back to 75-56. The Red Hawks retaliated in almost similar fashion, however, closing the gap to 79-68 with a 12-4 skein that was capped by a Marc Kirkland layup with 6:41 showing on the clock.
That was as close as the Red Hawks would get, though, as the Mustang defense tightened up, forcing three Simpson turnovers in a two-minute window and limiting the visitors to 2-8 shooting and five points over the next five minutes.
On the other end, Anderson led a 10-5 skein that put the game away, scoring eight of the club's last 13 points.
After a superb first half from the field, the Mustangs were nearly as effective in the second stanza, burying 63% (17-27) of their shots on the way to a season-high 65% for the game. They limited Simpson to 38% accuracy in the second half and 41% for the game.
Anderson's career-high point total came on 12-16 shooting from the field and he added eight rebounds and a game-high six assists. Meanwhile, Byrd went for 17 points, Patureau posted his first double-double of the year with 15 points and a game-high 10 rebounds, and Shackelford finished with 13 points.
The Mustangs will have a chance to start a winning streak Wednesday evening when they welcome UC Merced to Bross Court for a 7:30pm tipoff.