In a night honoring Taylor Howell (C’18) and his many contributions to the program over the past four years, the Sewanee Tigers dominated the Oglethorpe Petrels 81-46 on February 9 in large part due to a 53 percent field goal percentage and a season-high 24 assists.
“I honestly could not have asked for more,” said Howell. “We got a huge win over a great team, and I was able to share the special night with my friends, family, and incredible teammates.”
The last time that the two programs met, the Petrels pulled out a close 65-60 overtime win, so the Tigers were out for vengeance knowing that the winner would claim sole possession of second place in the Southern Athletic Association (SAA) standings.
Oglethorpe led the game 9-7 after six minutes of play until point guard Hunter Buescher (C’19) hit back-to-back shots to give Sewanee a 12-9 lead, a lead that the Tigers would not give up for the remainder of the night.
As the clock ticked down towards halftime, Sean McDonough (C’21) reminded the large crowd at Juhan Gymnasium of his clutchness by hitting a three-pointer with two seconds remaining. The Tigers went into halftime holding a 39-25 lead.
Both Sewanee’s offense and defense came out of the locker room hot and stayed that way for the whole second half. The Tigers dominated with 42 points on 60 percent shooting and only gave up a mere 21 points in the second half, leading to a 81-46 win.
“When we go with Coach [Mick] Hedgepeth’s game plan and actually stick to the details, everything else falls into place,” star forward A.T. Mann (C’20) said. “That’s why we were able to handle business on both sides of the ball last night.”
Buescher finished with 25 points (7-10 in three-point shots) to lead the Tigers in scoring. On top of that, Thomas and guard Luke Smith (C’21) both contributed important double-doubles.
The win gives the Tigers a 13-9 overall record (9-3 in the Southern Athletic Association), and they now sit one game behind the Centre Colonels in the conference standings. After hosting Berry College on February 12, they will conclude their regular season February 17 at Centre.