SANTA CRUZ (12-7) –The Banana Slugs started a weekend homestand as they took on Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at Kaiser Permanente Arena. The Stags never trailed during the course of the game as they won 67-55.
In the first half, the game was tied twice; the second occasion at 4-4 after a pair of Avri Finch free throws. The Stags took the lead for good at 6-4, on a pair of Mitchell Kirsch free throws with 16:49 left in the half. After the Stags took their largest lead of the half at 19-12, the Banana Slugs got back into the ballgame and would trim the Stags' lead to two, at 21-19, after a pair of Vinay Narayanam free throws before the Stags would expand their lead to 31-24 at halftime.
In the second half, the Stags' lead would reach double digits, at 40-30 with 16:20 left on a Maxwell Kirsch layup. The Banana Slugs came as close as six, at 51-45, on Narayanam's three pointer with 9:32 left. The Stags would gain their largest lead of the ballgame however at 62-48, on a George Walker layup with 5:20 left.
Finch had a game-high eighteen points to lead the Banana Slugs. Simon Mueller-Landsvik had thirteen.
Kirsch had twelve for the Stags.
The Banana Slugs shot 36.5% (19-52) from the field, 27.8% (5-18) from the three-point line and were 75% (12-16) from the free throw line. The Stags shot 49% (25-51) from the field, 40.9% (9-22) from the three-point line and were 72.7% (8-11) from the free throw line.
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps outrebounded UC Santa Cruz 33-30 and had twenty-six more points off the bench (41-15) than did the Banana Slugs.
The Banana Slugs will have little time as reflect on tonight's as they will play tomorrow. The next game for the Banana Slugs will be tomorrow as they take on NCCAA member West Coast Baptist College at Kaiser Permanente Arena. Tipoff is set for 7 pm.