The Mighty Oaks come home with a big 81-62 road conference win against Albany College of Pharmacy Wednesday night! ESF led for the entirety of the game and the win moves ESF to 3-0 in conference and 9-7 on the season.
The contest at Albany's White Gymnasium opened with a 5-0 Mighty Oaks quick lead off of a Jared Bard 3-pointer and a Tyler Kuhn hoop at the rim. Albany answered with four quick points to bring the score to 5-4 but ESF put the clamps down defensively pushing the lead to as many as 22 in the opening frame. Captilizing in transition with Ryan Caldwell's 10 first half rebounds and Tyler Kuhn's five boards, the Mighty Oaks were able to push the tempo on the offensive end as Jared Bard hit three treys and the bench added key buckets from Zane Paradies and Cory Rogers to give ESF a 32-10 lead with just 2:40 to play in the half. After an Albany timeout, the home team closed the half on an 8-0 run by ESF still held a 32-18 halftime advantage. Jared Bard led the ESF charge with 3 trifects and 9 points.
Albany started the second frame with a slower pace and were able to settle in with their zone attack, drawing the Mighty Oaks to just a 51-44 lead with 8:30 left in the contest. ESF's transition game kicked in again as Justin VanDuLuitgaarden and Ryan Caldwell made some key buckets at the rime and Jared Bard continued his hot shooting, splashing another 3 treys in the half (including a four point player). With the lead at 61-51 ESF with four minutes remaining, a Ryan Caldwell slam and key free-throws helped the Mighty Oaks close the last four minutes on a 20-11 run and wrapping up the 81-62 conference road win.
Jared Bard set a career high with 23 points including 6 treys and 6 rebounds. Ryan Caldwell (26 points, 15 boards) and Tyler Kuhn (15 points, 11 boards) both came home with double-doubles and Dan Treadwell added 5 assists for the Mighty Oaks.
The win gives ESF nine victories on the season, setting a program record for wins and puts the Mighty oaks in first place in the HVIAC at 3-0.
ESF returns to the court at home January 28 when they host Vaughn College at ITC-Syracuse with a 3pm tip.