Cardinals Cruise to Win over Pioneers, 64-31

UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mich. - The Saginaw Valley State University men's basketball team was victorious today (Dec. 30) by a score of 64-31 in their inaugural regular season contest against Delta College.

Saginaw Valley got off to a quick start, scoring the first nine points of the game after a Brett Beland (Menominee, Mich. / Menominee HS) layup with 16:59 left to play in the opening half. A pair of free thows and back-to-back layups by Jay Thames (Port Huron, Mich. / Port Huron Northern HS) helped the Cardinals maintain a 17-8 edge with 7:22 remaining in the half. Beland finished with seven points, while Thames added seven points and seven rebounds.

A strong defensive effort led by Kellen Smith (Covington, Kentucky / Scott HS) and Brett Beland, each with a pair of steals, helped propel Saginaw Valley to a 31-15 lead entering the halftime intermission.

For the half, the Cardinals held Delta College to 7-for-27 (25 percent) shooting from the floor, while Saginaw Valley shot 40 percent on 11-for-27 shooting. The Cardinals also held an 8-0 advantage on fast break points.

"Meijer Player of the Game" Chris Webb (Saginaw, Mich. / Arthur Hill HS) opened the second half by making a pair of layups to push Saginaw Valley's lead to 35-15 with 17:25 left in the contest. Webb would finish the game with 11 points and four assists.

With 6:58 left in the game, consecutive three pointers by Stone Beckwith (Mt. Pleasant, Mich. / Beal City HS) capped a 14-0 run to put the Cardinals up by 30 points (52-22). In just 10 minutes of action, Beckwith scored 9 points on 3-of-4 shooting from behind the arc. Brandon Havercamp (Bay City, Mich. / Bay City Western HS) got into the action by throwing down a two-handed slam dunk to put Saginaw Valley up 54-25 with just under five minutes to play. 

Saginaw Valley outscored Delta College 33-16 in the second half to come away with a 64-31 victory. With the game in hand early in the second half, Cardinal head coach Randy Baruth was able to give minutes to every player on the bench.

For the game, Saginaw Valley outscored the Pioneers 12-0 in fast break points. The Cardinals also shot 9-of-17 (53 percent) from behind the three point line, while holding Delta College to just 1-of-15 (6 percent) from behind the arc.

The Saginaw Valley State University men's basketball team will return to the hardwood on Thursday (Jan. 3) when they host Findlay for a 6:00 PM contest.