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Titans anything but Cool in blowout win

Lane men's Basketball's Tashon Brown
Tashon Brown, men's basketball

The Titans leading scorer wasn't Tarik Cool for the first time, instead Tashon Brown led the way with 20 points. Eight Titans had double-figures and all 12 scored in a 122-47 romp over Willamette JV.

How it happened: Unlike previous games where the Titans gave up a lot of points at the line because of fouls, they only committed six in the 1st  half. The Titans forced Willamette's first timeout after a Cool assisted Brown three, giving the Titans a 36-8 lead with 11:06 left in the 1st half. Then, with 9:54 left, Lucas Wilson, Oregon's 5A basketball player of the year, made his first collegiate appearance. 2:14 later Wilson hit a three for his first career points. 38 seconds later Jake Willemsen scored a layup for his first career points.

Brown would lead the Titans with 14 points on 5-6 shooting and 3 assists, 2 rebounds and 2 steals in the 1st half. The other Titan in double-figures was Cody Mathis with 10 points and six rebounds. The Titans made 28 field goals and had assists on 16 of them; Cool led the way with seven assists. A area of concern through two games has been rebounding, in the 1st half the Titans were plus 13 and their defense was good, holding Willamette to 27.3 percent shooting and 20 percent from three. The Titans led 71-23 at half. 

The 2nd half was a slightly less explosive version of the 1st half. The Titans started with a steal and layup from Rodney Hounshell and a 16-2 run in the first 4:35. With 6:44 to go in the game, Connor Luna, a freshman from Churchill High School, scored his first career points off an offensive rebound. The Titans were never tested and were able to use their entire roster in the 2nd half.

Luna finished with 10 points and three rebounds. Brown added six more points and six rebounds to finish with a career and game high 20 points. He finished with eight rebounds, three assists and two steals. Mathis only had three points and three rebounds, but added four blocks, two steals and an assists, missing his second career double-double by one rebound. Mathis had 13 points and six blocks. Willemsen tallied 11 points and a career and game high four steals. Hounshell, the Titans 2nd leading scorer, added 16 points on 6-8 shooting. Gabe Sorber contributed 11 points and on 3-5 shooting.

What/who stood out: The Titans scored over 100 points for the third straight game and are averaging an NWAC best 116.3 ppg. They also had 17 more steals and average exactly 17 spg, 1st in the NWAC. Their 28 assists give the Titans a 27.3 spg average, 1st in the NWAC. The non-glamorous side of the game, defense, see the Titans giving up the 4th lowest opponent field goal percentage at 35.3 percent and three point percentage at 27.5 percent.

Hounshell is shooting 66.7 percent on the season, good for 13th in the NWAC, but his 11 shots attempts a game is tied with one other player for the most in the top 13. Another top shooter, percentage wise, is Sorber, he is 6th in the NWAC at 71.4 percent. Cool only attempted nine field goals after attempting 19 and 16 in his first two games, but had 13 assists after seven total thru two games. Mathis had two blocks in two games, but collected six tonight. Will Graves filled up the box score, finishing with eight points, seven rebounds, four assists, three steals and a block. Graves is 3rd on the team in scoring (13.1), T-2nd in rebounding (5.7), 3rd in assists (4.7), 3rd in steals (2) and T-2nd in blocks (.7).

What it means: The Titans move to 3-0. They didn't have a player foul out for the first time, held their first opponent under 50 points and conceded less than 27 (only seven) free throw attempts.

What's next: The Titans will go on the road for the first time. They play Thursday Nov. 29 at New Hope in Eugene at 7 p.m. Their next home game is the start of the Dale Bates Tournament on Dec. 7, at 7 p.m. vs. Tacoma.