By Rob Kiser
The Owens Community College basketball team is always a tough challenge in Ohio Community College Athletic Confeence action.
Wednesday night was no exception for Edison State.
The Chargers were able to stay close for much of the first half, before the Express pulled away to a 101-77 victory.
Edison’s Zach Ledbetter started the game’s scoring on an assist from Romello Yaqub and the Chargers were in front in the early going.
Five points by Hadith Tiggs put Edison up 14-10 and the Chargers took their biggest lead of 17-12 when Dakota Prichard hit a 3-pointer.
Two free throws by Darryl Robinson gave Edison a 19-16 lead with 10:22 remaining in the half, but Owens would answer with nine straight points to take the lead for good.
After a basket by DJ Tyree for Owens, the Express’ Rylan Davis scored seven straight points.
A three by Yaqub broke the drought at the 7:38 mark and he added a putback at the 6:40 mark to get Edison within 25-24.
But, Owens would finish the half on a 20-9 run to go in front 45-33 at the break.
The Express made four threes in that run, including two by Marquevious Wilson, who had 10 points in the run.
The Express continued the momentum in the second half, going on an 11-2 run to open a 56-35 lead with 17:30 remaining in in the game.
Davis hit a three and Gabe Simpson followed with eighth straight points in the run.
Five straight points by Yaqub got Edison within 57-44 with 15:25 remaining, but that was as close as the Chargers could get.
Yaqub had 20 points, four assists and five steals to lead Edison, while Tiggs, Danny Lee Cotbett and Prichard all scored nine points.
Wilson had 18 points and five assists for Owens.
Simpson added 16 points and and four steals, while Justin Sylver had a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Davis had 12 points and Julian Egbo gave the Express a fifth double-figure scorer with 11 points and five rebounds.
Edison was 30 of 59 from the floor for the game for 51 percent, including eight of 23 from 3-point range for 35 percent. The Chargers made nine of 14 free throws for 64 percent.
Owens hit on 36 of 63 from the floor for 57 percent, including a deadly 11 of 23 from behind the arc for 48 percent. The Express were also on target from the line, hitting on 18 of 22 attempts for 82 percent.
Owens won the battle of the boards 33-25.
The Express improved to 9-7 overall and 3-2 in OCCAC play.
The Chargers, 13-4 overall and 1-3 in OCCAC play, will be back in action Saturday, hosting Sinclair at 3 p.m.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.
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