UC Clermont slips past Denison

Dimonde Hale logged 29 points and 10 boards at UC Clermont on Monday.
Dimonde Hale logged 29 points and 10 boards at UC Clermont on Monday.

University of Cincinnati Clermont had five players score in double figures as the Cougars edged out Denison, 69-64, on Monday evening in Batavia, Ohio.

The visiting Big Red took the early advantage, gaining a 12-4 lead roughly five and a half minutes into the game.  DU held its lead for over 16 minutes until a Davyne Davis triple put the Cougars on top for the first time all half, 23-22.   Denison closed out the period with a 6-2 spurt to take a five-point lead into the locker room.

DU quickly built a double-digit lead after a pair of Dimonde Hale buckets and a Brad Woolard three-pointer.  Trailing 41-31, Clermont engineered an 11-2 run that shrunk the deficit to one with 12:37 to go.  Despite falling behind by five, the Cougars orchestrated another offensive burst that was capped off by a go-ahead three by Davis which put the home team up 49-47.  Trailing 65-62, Hale drove the lane, scored from short range and drew a foul with 27 seconds to play.

However, the game-tying free throw bounced off the iron and into the lap of Kendall Beamon.  Beamon knocked down both attempts at the charity stripe to push the DU deficit back to three points.  After a missed three-point attempt with four second to play, Dylan Phillips iced the game after knocking down a pair of free throws.

Denison shot 44 percent from the field and just 24 percent from beyond the arc.  The Big Red also struggled at the foul line, converting 6-of-13 attempts (46 percent).  On the flip side, the Cougars knocked down 15-of-16 attempts at the charity stripe.

Hale led all scorers with 29 points to go along with a game-high 10 rebounds.  The senior was 12-for-16 from the field and went 5-for-7 at the foul line.  Robby Weingart and Alex Longi each chipped in nine points.

Beamon led Clermont with 18 points, while Wayne Evan and Darwin Toliver added 14 and 12, respectively.  JC Luncan chipped in 11 tallies off the bench, while Davis posted 10 points and three steals.

Denison falls to 4-9, while the Cougars improve to 5-17.  The Big Red returns to action on Wednesday when they travel to North Coast Athletic Conference rival Ohio Wesleyan for an 8 p.m. tip-off.