By Tim Peterson
(Glendora) – Azusa Pacific jumped out to a 7-0 lead with slam dunks by Corey Langerveld and Selom Mawugbe and went on to beat Fresno Pacific 87-64 Wednesday night at Felix Event Center.
They played it even the rest of the first half and still led 36-30 at the break.
The Cougars were up 18-12 with 10:50 left in the first half and then opened up a 26-13 lead with 7:20 left. The Cougars still led 34-22 at the 3:41 mark, but Fresno Pacific outscored APU 8-2 down the stretch to cut the lead to six at halftime.
Mandrell Worthy led the Cougars in the first half with 10 points, Mawugbe had eight and Langerveld and Ben Taufahema each had six. Taufahema nailed two threes late in the first half. Aamondae Coleman led the Sunbirds with 10 and Jake Straughan scored six.
The teams traded baskets to start the second half as APU was up 47-41 with 15:09 remaining. Darien McClain hit a driving bucket to cap a 10-2 Cougar run to make it 55-41 with 11:23 left.
The Sunbirds got within ten but Langerveld knocked down a three and Petar Kutlesic buried a jumper to spark a 9-0 run to give Azusa Pacific a 66-47 lead with 7:41 left.
Another Langerveld three extended the lead to 76-55 with 3:35 left on the clock and the Cougars cruised home from there.
McClain scored 16 points in the second half and finished with 19 to lead Azusa Pacific. Worthy had 18, Mawugbe 15 and Langerveld 14.
For Fresno Pacific Coleman topped all scorers with 21, Straughan had 14 and Sam Holmes finished with 11.
The Cougars won the rebounding war 43-41 with Kutlesic cleaning the glass with nine boards.
APU improved to 10-5 overall and 6-1 in the PacWest Conference while Fresno Pacific dropped to 4-11 and 2-5