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Will Householter (34-35 FT this season) knocked two big ones down to seal it
Will Householter (34-35 FT this season) knocked two big ones down to seal it

CMS Men's Basketball Holds Off Redlands 69-65 for Key SCIAC Road Win

REDLANDS, Calif. - The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's basketball team built a 15-point second half lead, but had to hold off several Redlands comeback efforts to hang on for a 69-65 road win on Wednesday evening at Currier Gymnasium.

With the win, CMS improves to 17-5 overall and 11-2 in the SCIAC, taking over sole possession of second place in the league standings after Pomona-Pitzer dropped into third with a road loss at Chapman. The Stags nearly pulled into a tie for first, but Cal Lutheran was able to stay in front at 12-1 after defeating Occidental in overtime. Redlands, meanwhile, falls to 12-9 overall and 4-8 in the SCIAC. 

The Stags nearly put all five starters in double figures, with Josh Angle finishing with 17 points, Caelan Jones 14, Will Householter and Rhett Carter each scoring 10, and James Frye with nine. 

Will King, though, provided two of the biggest points of the night when he hit a jumper with 36 seconds left to put the Stags ahead 66-63, 21 seconds after the Bulldogs had a steal and fast-break lay-up to close to within a single point. 

Redlands hit two foul shots with 11 seconds to go to close to within 67-65, but Householter was able to knock down two pressure foul shots to get the lead back to four. Householter was 5-5 at the line on the day, improving to 97.1 percent on the season (34-35), including a current streak of 22 makes in a row. 

It seemed like CMS wouldn't need to worry about pressure foul shots after they built a 56-41 lead early in the second half. Caelan Jones knocked down a three-pointer to beat the first half buzzer and give the Stags a 45-34 lead at the break, and after the Bulldogs opened the second half with a 6-0 run to get it to 45-40, Jones had seven points in an 11-1 run, capping it off with another three-pointer with 12:08 to go. 

Redlands, though, responded with a 13-0 run to get the game back down to just two points at 56-54 with 6:13 to play, before Angle ended a nearly seven-minute scoring drought with two foul shots with 5:17 to go. Redlands was able to get the lead down to one point three separate times, but were unable to pull in front. 

CMS got the early upper hand with a 9-2 lead, after Angle hit a three-pointer and Householter scored six points on a three-pointer and three foul shots. The Stags led 13-4 at one point, but Redlands surged in front 16-15 with a 12-2 run, for their final lead of the game. CMS then came right back with a 13-0 run, starting with a Jones three-pointer and ending with two Angle foul shots. 

Redlands was within 37-34 with 1:10 to go in the half, but CMS rattled off eight quick points to take the momentum into the locker room, with Angle and Frye hitting jumpers before the Jones three-pointer. 

CMS finished with a narrow 35-33 edge on the boards, with Angle tallying a team-high eight. The free throw line proved to be key, with the Stags shooting 16-20 for 80 percent, and Redlands shooting 14-23 for 60.9 percent. 

CMS will be back in action on Saturday when it travels to Pomona-Pitzer for a 2 p.m. contest.