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Owls stay unbeaten, go wire-to-wire against Wolverines

GROVE CITY, Pennsylvania — The Kenyon College men’s basketball team kept up its winning ways, improving to 3-0 with a 60-50 victory against Grove City College (1-2). The Owls scored on the first possession en route to scoring the game’s first six points and never looked back in the wire-to-wire win over the Wolverines.

Grove City pulled within two a few times in the early going, including cutting Kenyon’s lead to 15-13, but a 12-4 stretch helped the Owls build a comfortable 13-point halftime lead, 35-22. It was the Miles Versa show for the first 20 minutes as the sophomore scored 16 points, 11 more than any other player. Versa did it all offensively, finishing with game-highs of 19 points and five assists.

Every Owl that checked into the game recorded a bucket as the visitors prevailed despite scoring a season-low 60 points. Drew Valentino, a junior, scored a season-high nine points and matched a career-high with 12 rebounds. Combined with 10 rebounds from David Mazon III, the Owls held a 46-37 edge on the boards. The Owls also benefited from seven points from sophomore Gefen Bar-Cohen and six points apiece from a pair of Nick’s, senior Nick Lewis and first-year Nick Nelson.

Kenyon was not particularly efficient offensively, shooting 41.9 percent (26-62) overall, 17.6 percent (3-17) from three-point range, and 50 percent (5-10) from the free-throw line. However, the Owls’ defense did its duty, holding the Wolverines to a 32/10/69 slash line after forcing a 20-63 clip from the floor, a 1-10 mark from deep, and watching a 9-13 performance at the charity stripe.

The Owls pulled away over the first half of the second half, making seven of their first nine shots in the half. A 9-1 scoring stretch that started with a made basket from Valentino stretched the Kenyon lead to 20 at 52-32 with a little over 10 minutes left in the game. The Wolverines clawed back to cut the lead in half, but the Owls cruised to their first 3-0 start since winning the first three games of the 2017-18 campaign.

Kenyon gets a chance to improve to 4-0 for the first time since the 1994-95 season this Saturday, Nov. 20, when they take on Wilmington College (2-0). The match between the Owls and the Quakers is scheduled to tip off at 2 p.m. in Wilmington, Ohio.

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