MCHENRY — Garrett College’s defense once again jump-started their offense Monday night as the Lakers pulled away from visiting Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, 83-65.

Garrett — holding a nervous, 45-41 lead — came up with three consecutive steals at the start of a 15-0, second-half run that broke the game open. Tyler Rodeheaver had a breakaway slam off a Dalton Wiles steal before Justen Anderson nailed consecutive 3-pointers from opposite wings after thefts by Kobey Tigney (14 points) and Rodeheaver.

“When we’re pressuring the ball and forcing turnovers, it leads to some transition runouts,” said Garrett head coach Matt McCullough. “That gets the offense going.”

Anderson and Rodeheaver each scored 16 points to lead the Lakers, with Anderson scoring 14 in the second half.

“I thought we got really good minutes from Justen Anderson in the second half,” said McCullough. “He was a big second-half contributor and really sparked us. He saw some shots fall and his confidence grew.”

The Lakers (4-1) won their fourth straight game and stayed perfect (3-0) at home, but Penn Highlands battled evenly through the first 16 minutes in a game that was tied at 24.

“We gave them a few easy baskets, but for the most part I thought we were pretty good defensively,” McCullough said.

Garrett took the lead for good on consecutive jumpers by Lamont Powell (11 points) that started a 12-3 run that included the final nine points of the half as Garrett built a 36-27 lead.

McCullough praised the squad for playing hard in what can often be a college basketball “trap game” — the final contest before the Thanksgiving break.

“We played on Saturday and had one day to get ready for Penn Highlands,” he said. “We have guys traveling tonight and early tomorrow for Thanksgiving, and it’s about staying focused while all that’s going on.

“We just didn’t make a lot of shots early — but we were able to rely on our defense in the first half. When you’re not hitting shots, the defense has to carry you until they start falling.”

Darius Jones and AJ Crosby each added seven points for the Lakers.

Garrett travels to Johnstown, Pennsylvania, for a rematch with Penn Highlands Monday night.

Garrett 116 Butler CCC 66

BUTLER, Pa. — Tyler Rodeheaver scored 25 of his game-high 31 points in the first half, sparking Garrett College over host Butler County Community College on Saturday afternoon.

Rodeheaver made all 12 of his 2-point attempts, finishing 13 of 14 from the field, and was 4 for 4 from the line. He also had five rebounds and three steals.

“Tyler came focused and with great intensity, which led to a really good ballgame from him,” said McCullough, whose team won its third straight after opening the season with a one-point loss at Prince George’s Community College.

Justen Anderson added 25 points while Dalton Wiles (11), Lamont Powell (10) and Darius Jones (10) each hit double figures. Lamondre Gregg (9), Kobe Tigney (8), Kyree Jones (5), Jose Rosario (5) and Terrence Ward (2) gave the Lakers 10 scorers.

“We had so many guys contribute,” McCullough said. “The trio of Justen Anderson, Dalton Wiles and Lamondre Gregg stepped up and played with confidence off the bench, and we will need that from them moving forward.”

McCullough also praised Tigney’s effort, which resulted in team highs in assists (six) and steals (four).

“Kobe played well and very unselfishly,” he said. “He has emerged as our leader, and it’s great to see him lead by example.”

AJ Crosby didn’t score, but led the Lakers with 10 rebounds.

Mattix Clement had a team-high 27 points for Butler and Troy Loughry contributed 19 points.

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