(Posted December 29, 2010)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Juniata College took care of the ball, took advantage of free throws, and took liberties from beyond the three-point line and came away with a 68-51 win over Washington & Jefferson College, Wednesday night at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.

Three Eagles scored in double figures, led by freshman Jeremy Hays' (McMechen, W.Va./John Marshall) 15 points off the bench on 5-of-7 shooting from the floor. Hays connected on four three-pointers, accounting for half of Juniata's 8-of-18 mark from beyond the arc versus W&J.

Junior guard Dan Sekulski (Douglassville, Pa./Daniel Boone) led the starters with 14 points while dishing out four assists. Sophomore point guard Alex Raymond (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Altoona Area) handed out a team-high five assists to go with his 12 points. Raymond logged three 3-pointers on the night.

Sophomore forward Nate Higgins (St. Mary's, Pa./Elk County Catholic) grabbed a team high seven rebounds to go with four points in his first appearance of the season.

Juniata (6-5) committed just 13 turnovers while forcing Washington & Jefferson (3-8) into making 21 giveaways on the night. Moreover, the Eagles made the Presidents pay for their poor ball control; Juniata recorded 28 points-off-turnovers on the night, compared to seven by W&J.

The Eagles shot 46.2 percent (24-52) from the floor - slightly behind the Presidents' 46.7 percent (21-45) mark. However Juniata converted 12 of its 17 free throws, outperforming a Washington & Jefferson squad that was a pedestrian 7-of-13 at the stripe.

A 7-0 Juniata run in the first half broke what had been a one-possession, see-saw affair, into an Eagle runaway. Bruce Knowles' (Duncannon, Pa./Susquenita) jumper at the 8:11 mark of the opening stanza gave Juniata a 22-19 lead, and a pair of Sekulski foul shots and a traditional 3-point play by Knowles turned that ino an eight-point Juniata advantage over the next minute.

Raymond's 3-pointer with 4:10 showing on the first half clock stretched Juniata's lead into double-digits, 35-25. He tacked on a foul shot and another trey over the two-and-a-half minutes, and Higgins completed the nine-point Eagle run to complete the frame with a jumper with 55 seconds left in the half.

The Eagles controlled the second half tempo, stretching their lead to 21 points, 46-25, just a minute-and-a-half into the second half on a Brian Scholly (State College, Pa./State College Area) jumper. Twice W&J cut the lead down to 12 points, but a Scholly 3-pointer with 9:45 remaining squashed what would be the Presidents' final attempt at a comeback.

Three W&J players scored in double figures, led by Adam Braithwaite's 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting from the field. Zach Bellhy finished with 12 points, while Paul Matthews tallied 10.

Juniata remains at home to close out its 2010-11 non-conference slate, as it hosts Grove City College on Tuesday, Jan. 4, at 7:30 p.m. at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.


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Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.