By: Andrew Korba
NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. -- The Hiram College men's basketball team topped host Westminster (Pa.) 94-91 to post a perfect 2-0 record a the Buzz Ridl Classic.
The Terriers are now 2-1 on the season, while the Titans drop to 0-4.
Sophomore Paul Ortiz (Canton, Ohio/McKinley Senior) paced Hiram with a game-high 25 points.
Junior Jeremiah Thomas (Cleveland, Ohio/John Hay) added 12 points off the bench on a perfect 4-of-4 shooting.
For their efforts on the weekend, Ortiz and Woodson were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Westminster tallied the first six points of the game, but Hiram responded with the next nine points take an early 9-6 edge.
The Terriers used a 7-0 run, capped off on a 3-pointer by Ortiz, to break a 15-15 tie and open up a 22-15 lead.
The Titans would battle back to within two points, before sophomore Isaiah Matthews (Orlando, Fla./Eastridge) nailed a 3-pointer at the first half buzzer giving Hiram a 42-37 lead heading into the break.
Westminster would continue to hang around a 3-pointer from Ortiz with just over eight minutes to play gave Hiram a 68-60 lead.
A layup from senior Ray Gaston (Warren, Ohio/John F. Kennedy) capped off an 8-2 run and allowed the Terriers to open a 81-67 lead with 4:54 to play.
The Titans would storm back and pull within 92-89, but two free throws from Ortiz with eight seconds left put the game away.
Hiram finished the game 31-of-67 (46.3 percent) from the field, while the Titans were 31-of-64 (48.4 percent).
The Titans won the rebounding battle 42-40.
The Terriers forced Westminster into 29 turnovers and scored 35 points off of the miscues.
Hiram will be back at it on Wednesday, as it continues its early season road tests with a 7 p.m. contest at Otterbein.