Mitchell’s triple-double leads WSU over Green BayFebruary 12, 2017
By Mike Klingshirn
DAYTON, Ohio – On Saturday night at the Nutter Center, Justin Mitchell became just the third player in Wright State University men’s basketball history to record a triple-double in a game. He led his team to an 88-79 victory over the Green Bay Phoenix by dishing out 10 assists, grabbing 11 rebounds, and scoring 14 points on 5-of-5 shooting from the floor, and 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
The two other Raiders to record a triple-double for the Green & Gold are Keion Brooks and Vernard Hollins. Coincidentally, all three players are from Fort Wayne, Indiana.
“It just doesn’t happen very often,” WSU head coach Scott Nagy said about Mitchell’s triple-double. “This is my twenty-second year of coaching, and it’s only the second time that it has happened for me.”
“It flat-out takes a guard that is a consistent rebounder. Let’s face it. He’s our best, and it’s not even close. For a guy that’s not a natural point guard, ten assists is tremendous.”
Trailing 24-19 with 7:46 left in the half, Wright State (17-9, 8-5 HL) scored eight straight points on a Mitchell jumper, and 3-pointers from Ryan Custer and Mark Alstork to put the Raiders up 27-24.
Both teams traded blows, the rest of the half, before heading into the intermission locker room tied at 38-all.
The first twenty minutes saw seven lead changes and seven tied scores. That would not be the case in the second half.
The Raiders set the tone for the rest of the game by opening the second stanza with a 7-2 run on an Alstork trey, a Steven Davis layup, and an Alstork jumper. It put Wright State up for good, 45-40, with 17:37 to play.
Green Bay (15-11, 9-5 HL) got to within three points, on three occasions, over the next three minutes (45-42, 49-46, 51-48). WSU pulled away from there, stretching the margin to 62-52 and 71-57 with 5:51 left.
One difference in the second half was WSU’s ability to keep the Phoenix off of the offensive glass. UWGB had six offensive rebounds in the first twenty minutes but were held to only two on their end of the court after halftime.
“We had a lot of nice hustle plays tonight,” Nagy said. “Our kids really fought. They are a hard team to beat on the glass. They’re athletic. They’re deep. And they just wear you down.”
Green Bay didn’t go away easily, however. They scored the next eight points on 3-pointers by Turner Botz and Tevin Findlay, and a jumper by Jamar Hurdle to close to within 71-65 with 4:29 remaining.
Wright State scored the next six points to stretch their lead to 77-65 with 3:10 to play, and 87-76 with 42 seconds left, before coming away with the 88-79 victory.
Besides Mitchell’s triple-double, the Raiders were led in scoring by Alstork (20), Davis (17) and Benzinger (16).
Wright State won the battle of the boards 30-29. They made 22 assists, while committing 13 turnovers.
Was Mitchell aware that he was coming close to a triple-double? “Yah, he came and told me,” Alsork commented. “I said, ‘I got you. I got you.’”
Post game Audio
Alstork and Mitchell:
With the win, Wright State’s all-time series record against Green Bay improves to 26-31.
The Raiders hit the road for three games before returning home for their final two games of the regular season at the Nutter Center. They will host Valparaiso on Friday night February 24. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 pm. Illinois-Chicago will be the final regular season opponent on Sunday afternoon February 26. Tip-off for that on is slated for 2:00 pm.