By: Andrew Korba
HIRAM, Ohio -- Senior J.J. Woodson (Oakwood Village, Ohio/Bedford) recorded his second career double-double to lead the Hiram College men's basketball team past Wittenberg by a 64-60 score on Saturday.
The Terriers conclude the 2015-16 regular season with a 18-7 overall record and 12-6 mark in the NCAC, while the Tigers end the season at 14-11, 9-9.
The Hiram win secures the second straight season sweep of Wittenberg. In addition, the Terriers 12 NCAC wins are the most for the program since joining the league in 1999-00.
Hiram will be the No. 3 seed in the upcoming NCAC Tournament and will host sixth-seeded Kenyon in the quarterfinals on Tuesday at a time that has yet to be determined.
Woodson was honored with teammates Austen Rekolt (Salem, Ohio/West Brach) and Ray Gaston (Warren, Ohio/John F. Kennedy) and former Terrier Justin Harrington in a pregame ceremony as part of Senior Day festivities.
Woodson would finish with 20 points and 10 rebounds to go along with four assists. He also recorded a double-double in Hiram's win at Kenyon on December 5.
Sophomore Paul Ortiz (Canton, Ohio/McKinley Senior) went 5-of-9 from beyond the arc to finish with 15 points. Gaston added 12 points and seven rebounds.
Ortiz drained a trey at the 15:58 mark of the first half to allow the Terriers to open an early 11-5 advantage.
The Tigers would chip away at the lead and knotted the score at 13-13 with 10:14 left in the first half.
Hiram would hold a lead of no more than six points the rest of the first half and a 3-pointer at the horn by Gaston gave the Terriers a 33-27 edge at the half.
Wittenberg would keep the deficit within six points in the second half and jumped in front, 55-53, on a pair of Chad Roy free throws with 8:02 left to play.
The teams would trade hoops before two free throws from sophomore Kelvin Jones (Sheffield Lake, Ohio/Brookside) capped a five point spurt and gave the Terriers a 60-57 lead with 3:06 left.
The Tigers would have an answer and tied the score at 60-60 on a basket and a free throw by Jaelin Williams with 1:06 remaining.
Woodson would draw a foul and converted both free throws with 59 seconds left to put Hiram up 62-60.
The Terriers would get a defensive stop and Woodson was fouled again. He knocked down both of his freebies to make the score 64-60 in favor of Hiram with 29 seconds left.
The Tigers came down and got off two shots, but missed them both. Jones was able to grab the rebound and sent a long outlet pass to Woodson who ran out the final seconds to clinch the victory.
Hiram shot just 19-of-65 (29.2 percent) from the field, but converted on 12-of-35 (34.3 percent) of its 3-point attempts. Wittenberg was 20-of-58 (34.5 percent) shooting and 5-of-20 (25.0 percent) from beyond the arc.
The Tigers held a 46-43 rebounding advantage.