Men's basketball improves to 5-0 with win at Caltech

Kena Gilmour '20 (Josh McKee photo)
Kena Gilmour '20 (Josh McKee photo)

Hamilton College's Kena Gilmour '20 poured in 30 points and the Continentals pulled away late for a 94-82 non-conference win against the Caltech Beavers at Caltech's Braun Athletic Center on Wednesday night.

Hamilton (5-0 overall) is receiving votes in the first Top 25 regular season poll. The Continentals led by 22 points early in the second half before the Beavers erased their entire deficit. Hamilton scored 25 points off 19 Caltech turnovers and the Continentals enjoyed a 36-11 advantage in bench points.

Gilmour recorded the fourth game of 30 or more points in his Hamilton career and moved into ninth place on the team's all-time list with 1,498 points. He went 8-for-9 at the free-throw line and is shooting 96 percent (24-25) at the charity stripe this season. He was credited with four steals and three assists.

Spencer Kendall '21 was 6 of 7 from the field and finished with 12 points for the Continentals. Nkosi Cooper '23 chipped in 11 points and three assists, and Vince Conn '21 contributed eight points and three steals off the bench. Conner Rood '23 and Patrick Mogan '23 grabbed six rebounds apiece.

Marcus Gee paced the Beavers (2-3) with 28 points and four steals. Alec Andrews registered 19 points and six assists, Spencer Schneider dropped in 10 points and Pavlos Stavrinides pulled down 16 boards including seven on the offensive glass. Caltech held a 45-39 advantage in rebounds.

Hamilton led 41-27 at the break and pushed its advantage to 22 points at 62-40 on an old-fashioned 3-point play by Eric Anderson '22 with 14:04 left. The Beavers responded with a 12-2 run over the next three minutes and continued to slowly chip away at the Continentals' seemingly insurmountable cushion.

Caltech still trailed by 15 at 77-62 after a Gilmour 3-pointer with 8:00 remaining. The Beavers proceeded to score the next 13 points and closed to within a basket at 77-75 on a traditional 3-point play by Gee with 4:58 to go. After a 3-point play by Gilmour, Andrews found Stavrinides for a layup and Andrews followed with a 3-pointer that drew Caltech even at 80-80 with 3:44 left.

The Beavers mustered just two free throws the rest of the way as Caltech was 0 of 5 from the floor and committed three turnovers in the final three minutes. Gilmour scored the first 12 points of Hamilton's game-ending streak and his two free throws with 19 seconds remaining gave the Continentals a 92-81 advantage. Kendall's steal and thunderous two-handed slam with three seconds to go accounted for the final score. Gilmour boasted 28 points in the second half, Gee had 20 and Andrews contributed 15. Hamilton shot 56 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes.

There were four lead changes and two ties in the first half. Neither team led by more three points until Kendall's dunk made it 17-12 with 8:51 left. The Beavers were still within six points at 26-20 with 4:51 remaining when Hamilton went on a 9-2 spurt for a 35-22 lead after two free throws by Nick Osarenren '22 with 2:21 to go. Gilmour made a layup just before time ran out in the half after a shot from long range was off-target and the loose ball was collected by Osarenren. The Continentals took their 14-point halftime lead into the locker room. Caltech was 1 of 11 on 3-point attempts in the opening half. 

The Continentals travel to Thousand Oaks, Calif., for another non-conference contest against California Lutheran University on Friday, Nov. 29 at 10 p.m. Eastern time.