Men’s Basketball Wallops Comets in Season Opener

Photo credit: Joe Maiorana
Photo credit: Joe Maiorana

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Capital University men's basketball team opened up the 2016-17 season with a monstrous victory over the Olivet College Comets, 83-43, on Tuesday night. The Capital Center Performance Arena featured many new faces that comprise a young Crusaders team, but Joey Weingartner and Ganiyu Yahaya shined in the team's debut.

Thought Olivet's Kyle Emory put the guests on the board first, but it was their first and last lead of the night. For the next six minutes, Capital dominated with a 15-2 run that began with back-to-back buckets by sophomore guard Joey Weingartner (Centerville, Ohio/Centerville) and senior guard Tyrel Jackson (Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Coffman). Weingartner put down four more points for a total of six during that run to spark the Purple and White.

Cap (1-0) never let off the gas and built up a 20-point lead with 4:49 to go in the first half. Twelve of Weingartner's team-leading 20 points came in a first half that featured seven different Capital scorers that, combined, shot 53.3 percent from the field. Capital held a plus-8 rebound advantage to help overcome an 8-4 turnover deficiency. Cap's defense held Olivet to just 25 percent shooting (8-32) from field-goal range, and just 2-for-15 (.133) from 3-point range.

In his collegiate debut, freshman forward Ganiyu Yahaya (Allen, Ky.) totaled 13 points, including a demonstrative dunk stemming off of a block by sophomore Gavin Wildermuth. Yahaya also added four rebounds, one assist and one steal to couple with a solid night shooting. He went 4-for-6 from the field and added five free throw conversion.

Weingartner had a career day, notching his first double-digit offense game with a career-high 20 points on an 8-for-17 (.471) shooting evening. He also went 4-for-9 (.444) from distance to add to his overall stat line that included five rebounds, three assists, and two steals.

Capital exceeded its first half numbers by knocking down 17-of-28 field goals (.607) and holding a huge advantage over the Comets on the boards, 25-11. Freshman post player Nate Boone (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson) scored all five of his points in the second half and added five boards in the final 20, as well.  

Also scoring their first collegiate points in the victory were Jacob Yexbak, Dan Auble, and Tyler Jamison. Sophomore transfer Caleb Mitchell scored six points and added a trio of rebounds in his debut with the Crusaders.

Capital takes to the road for their next four games, including two to be played in Pittsburgh, Pa. against Chatham University (11/18) and La Roche College (11/19). Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. against Chatham.