The Mighty Oaks men's basketball team picked up a big win on the road Dec. 8 vs Johnson College, 88-68, to improve to 5-4.
The Jaguars jumped out to an early 10-4 lead but juniors Tyler Kuhn and Cory Rogers helped the Mighty Oaks get back into the game and ESF climbed to a 16-13 lead with 10 minutes remaining in the first half. A layup by Ryan Caldwell gave ESF a 38-32 lead to end the half.
In the second half, ESF's defense stymied the Jaguars early on as the Mighty Oaks maintained a 51-43 lead midway through the period. The Jaguars put on the full-court press and went on a furious run to get within one point, 61-60, with eight minutes remaining. A basket by freshman Ben Russ IV, followed by multiple baskets by Caldwell and senior Jared Bard, helped the Mighty Oaks pull ahead 69-60. A frustrated Jaguar squad picked up three technical fouls in the final two minutes. The Mighty Oaks converted free throws and maintained poise to come away with a 20-point win, 88-68.
Caldwell led ESF with 30 points and 17 rebounds. The senior has been red hot this season, averaging close to 22 points and 12 rebounds per game while shooting the ball at an efficient 55 percent. Bard added 15 points and Russ scored 15 points off the bench as well. Kuhn hauled down 13 rebounds for the Mighty Oaks.
Earlier in the week, the Mighty Oaks faced Penn State Wilkes-Barre in a makeup game. ESF fell 74-69. Caldwell led ESF in scoring with 17 points and 14 rebounds. Senior Dan Treadwell scored 11 points.
The Mighty Oaks improve to 5-4 overall and are ranked No. 17 nationally in the USCAA Division II Coaches Poll. The squad has the week off for finals and will be back in action vs Villa Maria College of Buffalo Dec. 19.