PAINESVILLE, Ohio-- The Lake Erie College men's basketball teams comeback bid against Wayne State University fell short as the Warriors defeated the Storm 79-70 Saturday (Dec. 14) in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference contest.
Wayne State controlled the pace throughout the first-half. The Warriors jumped out to a 12 point lead in the opening five minutes. The Storm brought the lead down to eight just minutes later, but the Warriors came back, leading by as much as 21 to take a 34-19 advantage into the half.
Michael Morris (New Palestine, Ind./New Palestine) led the Storm with five first-half points. The Storm shot just 28.6% (eight-of-28) from the floor in the first-half and converted just one-of-11 three-pointers. Gavin Toma led the way for the Warriors with 12 points as Wayne State converted 14-of-32 (43.8%) shots. The Warriors also held a 28-11 rebounding advantage.
The Warriors continued to roll in the second, leading 50-30 five minutes. The Storm started to chip away at the lead, bringing the Warrior within single digits, 58-49, with eight minutes to play following a traditional three-point play by Nate Tait (South Euclid, Ohio/Brush/Alderson-Broaddus). After a Warrior free-throw on the other end, Nick Wells (Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent-St. Mary) converted a three-point lead to bring the game within seven points. This was the closest the Storm got though, as the Wayne State kept steady the rest of the way en route to the win.
Riley Thomas (Cardington, Ohio/Cardington-Lincoln) and Garrick Sims (Barberton, Ohio/Barberton) led the way for the Storm with 14 points apiece. Morris ended the game with 10 points and grabbed five rebounds to share the team-high with Sims. Tom Parker (Cleveland, Ohio/St. Ignatius) had five assists to go alongside his eight points. Roy Alexander (Columbus, Ohio/Walnut Ridge) blocked two dunk attempts in the game.
Gavin Toma and Bryan Coleman led Wayne State with 24 and 22 points respectively. Chene Phillips also finished in double figures with 11.
The Storm picked up their shooting in the second-half, going 18-of-29 (62.1%) to finish the game at 45.6% (26-of-57), and hit five-of-eight second-half threes. The Warriors won the battle of the boards, 38-25.
On defense, the Storm forced 13 Warrior turnovers and had seven steals.
The Storm play their last game of the calender year on Wednesday (Dec. 18), playing host to Saginaw Valley State University.