RIO GRANDE, Ohio — For a couple of hours anyway, University of Rio Grande men’s basketball head coach Ken French and his players didn’t have to sweat out someone making – or missing – a last-second shot.
The RedStorm bolted to a 30-point lead less than nine minutes into the game and cruised to a 98-66 rout of Carlow University, Saturday afternoon, in River States Conference action at the Newt Oliver Arena.
Rio Grande, which had seven of its first 10 games decided by nine points or less, improved to 3-8 overall and 1-1 in conference play with the victory.
The Celtics dropped to 0-7 overall and 0-2 in the RSC with the loss.
Rio connected on 15 of its first 19 shots from the floor and opened up a 36-6 lead following a three-pointer by freshman Trey Kelley (Minford, OH) with 11:20 remaining in the first half.
The RedStorm finished the opening half 24-for-33 from the floor (72.7%) and pushed their lead to 33 points, 63-30, at the intermission.
Rio’s largest lead of the day – 38 points – came less than a minute into the second half when a three-pointer by senior Will Hill (Worthington, OH) made it 68-30 with 19:05 left to play.
Carlow cut the deficit to 30 points, 91-61, after a jumper by Nate Bell with 2:23 remaining in the contest, but got no closer the rest of the way.
The Celtics shot just 37.5 percent from the field (24-for-64), were out rebounded, 45-35, and committed 19 turnovers in their third loss of 30 points or more this season.
Rio Grande finished 37-for-69 from the floor (53.6%) for the game.
Sophomore Stanley Christian scored 18 of his game-high 19 points in the first half for the RedStorm. He also finished with a game-high eight rebounds.
Hill added 16 points and a game-high six assists in the winning effort, while sophomore Greg Wallace (Montego Bay, Jamaica) had a solid all-around performance with nine points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Tony Acrie had 15 points to lead Carlow, while Charlie Scharbo had 10 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Rio Grande returns to action next Saturday when it hosts Marian (Ind.) University in the Newt Oliver Coaches’ Classic.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.