In the first nine-plus minutes of the second half Tuesday night, the Hillsdale College men's basketball team outscored Cedarville University 26-6 to provide all the margin it needed to run its record to 2-0 on the season.
Breaking open a game that was tight at halftime, the Chargers went on to top the Yellow Jackets 76-59 in a pre-Thanksgiving non-conference matchup at Jesse Philips Arena. Hillsdale will next play in the 2013-14 GLIAC opener at Northwood on Thursday, Dec. 5.
After a back-and-forth first half that saw the Chargers unable to shake loose from the resilient Yellow Jackets, Hillsdale came out with more intensity on defense and was able to find holes on the other end of the floor to bust the game wide open.
Keying the victory for the Chargers was senior forward Tim Dezelski, who scored 18 of his career-high 28 points in the first half. He facilitated the offense and took advantage of matchup problems the Yellow Jackets had inside the paint. But Dezelski contributed so much more than scoring in this game, with perhaps his most diverse game of his career.
He shot 11-for-18 from the field, and added nine rebounds, five assists, four blocked shots and three steals in 36 minutes on the court. With just a single turnover, Dezelski was the picture of efficiency throughout the game.
Hillsdale held Cedarville to 36 percent field goal shooting in the second half, and outscored the visitors 41-26 in the final 20 minutes of the game. The Chargers held a 40-28 rebounding edge and had 17 assists on their 28 made field goals.
Sophomore Kyle Cooper also set a new career-high in scoring with 16 points, using his inside-out offensive game well, especially in the second half.