BARTLESVILLE - Stellar defense for a full 40 minutes carried the Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College Golden Norsemen to an 89-46 rout over the Oklahoma Wesleyan University junior varsity Wednesday night in the Eagles Field House.
The Golden Norse carry a 7-6 record to Branson, Missouri for a 5 p.m. game Friday against Link Prep Year.
"We've got something to prove against Link Prep before we go on Christmas break," said Golden Norse head coach Dustin Grover. "After all, they are the ones that beat us 70-69 on Nov. 2 in the season opener at the NEO Field House."
During the first 11 minutes of the opening half against the Link Prep Lions the Golden Norsemen trailed by a 23-7 margin. On field goals by Kingsley Sam, Gabriel Ferreira, Curthorn Baldwin and Pedro Lopes, the Norsemen eventually forged a 49-49 tie with 10:43 left in the game.
Sam led NEO with 14 points while Baldwin added 12, Ferreira 11 and Lopes 10 points.
Playing with a lineup that contained two 7-foot players, the Lions were led by Rylan Bergerson with 15 points while Densler Carnes contributed 14.
With the loss the OWUJV slip to 5-8 on the season.
"Like we've done most of the season, we were able to shut Oklahoma Wesleyan defensively most of the game," Grover said. "Then on the offensive end, we got real good production out of our interior play and also our transition game," Grover said. "We still didn't shoot the ball exceptionally well from the perimeter, but our transition game made up for that."
While limiting the Eagles to a 18 first-half points, the Norsemen put 52 points on the scoreboard for a lopsided lead at intermission.
NEO connected on 24 of 35 for 63 percent in the first half while canning 4 of 7 from the free throw line in the first 20 minutes.
"We played a lot of guys which cause the scoring to be spread out," Grover said. "All 12 of our players gained significant minutes and each of them scored."
Ferreira led all scorers with 18 points to lead NEO while Baldwin contributed 16, Justin Ford 12, Xavier Miller 9, Tyjuan Johnson 6, Sam 4, Dante Johnson 4, Morris Talbert 4, Lopes 2, Jalyn McKoy 2, Arkel Williams 2 and Aaron Chavis 2.