By: Andrew Korba
PITTSBURGH, Pa. -- Senior Austen Rekolt (Salem, Ohio/West Branch) and sophomore Kelvin Jones (Sheffield Lake, Ohio/Brookside) each posted new scoring career-highs and senior Ray Gaston (Warren, Ohio/John F. Kennedy) tied his career-best scoring output, as the Hiram College men's basketball team topped La Roche (Pa.) 88-81 on Saturday.
The Terriers are now 6-2 on the season, while the Redhawks fall to 3-7.
Jones paced Hiram with 23 points, bettering his previous career-high of of 19, set against Allegheny (Pa.) last season. In addition, he also pulled down 13 rebounds for his third double-double of the season and fifth of his career.
Gaston tallied 19 points, on 6-of-11 shooting, to tie his career-high set last season against Otterbein.
Rekolt added 17 points and five rebounds, which topped his career-high of 13 points also set last season against Otterbein.
The Terriers came out of the gates strong and took an early 10-2 lead less than five minutes into the contest.
La Roche would answer with the next nine points to jump in front 11-10, but Hiram countered with the next seven consecutive points to open up a 17-11 lead at the 10:31 mark of the first half.
The Redhawks would tie the score two more times, but the Terriers used a late 9-2 run to take a 38-27 lead into the intermission.
La Roche would battle back in the second half and went on an 8-0 run to pull within two points at 49-47.
But Hiram came right back with a 10-2 run to build a 59-49 lead with just under 10 minutes to play.
The Redhawks would trim Hiram's lead to 86-81 with 23 seconds remaining, but a Jones layup put the game away.
The Terriers finished the game 30-of-67 (44.8 percent) from the field and converted on 9-of-21 (42.9 percent) 3-pointers, while La Roche finished 25-of-73 (34.2 percent) in shooting and 11-of-29 (37.9 percent) from beyond the arc.
Hiram won the rebounding battle 45-37.
The Terriers will now take some time off and will play next at the McDonald's of Bluffton Holiday Tournament on December 29 and 30. Hiram will take on Illinois College in its first game on December 29 at 2 p.m.