Charlotte, NC - Johnson and Wales (8-13) celebrated the highest ranking in school history by hosting the Florida College Falcons (10-12) in the first round of the JWU Invitational Friday night. The Wildcats are ranked 12th in the USCAA D-II Coaches Poll, their highest ever. Florida College is ranked 13th in the USCAA D-I Coaches Poll, released Friday afternoon.
The Wildcats jumped on the Falcons early in game, sprinting out to a 14-4 lead in the first seven and a half minutes. The Falcons responded with a 10-1 run of their own to trim the JWU Lead to one at the 10:35 mark. From that point, the Wildcats used a dominating performance on the glass, to close the half on a 28-12 run to take a 43-26 lead into the break.
A 5-0 spurt to start the second stanza gave JWU it's largest lead of the game, 48-26. At that point, the Falcons ran off twelve unanswered points, keyed by Alvin Satram's three consecutive three pointers to cut the lead to 10. The Wildcats were able to stem the Florida College momentum over the next four minutes, but Satram's fourth three of the half trimmed the JWU lead to four at 54-50. The teams would trade baskets over the next few minutes before the Falcons finally made it all the way back, taking a 63-62 lead with 2:50 left. The Wildcats immediately responded with layups by Kindrick Anderson and Joshua Cohen. Two Anderson free throws with :28 left gave JWU a 5 point lead that they wouldn't relinquish, and they closed out a 70-65 win.
Kindrick Anderson led the Wildcats with 17 points and 14 rebounds, while Nick Crawford also recorded a double-double with 11 and 11. Joshua Cohen just missed out on a double-double himself as he tallied 19 points and 9 boards.
The Wildcats take on Virginia University of Lynchburg in the finals of the JWU Invitational tomorrow at 3pm. Florida College will face College of Faith (NC) in the consolation game at 1pm.