Pointers back on top - for now - thanks to fast start in WIAC - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Pointers back on top - for now - thanks to fast start in WIAC

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STEVENS POINT (WAOW) -

The UW-Stevens Point men's basketball team had a 2017 to forget, but now its back where it belongs - on top of the WIAC. 

UWSP improved to 3-0 in conference play with a 66-64 win over UW-La Crosse Wednesday night and now stands alone atop the standings.

They got the last-minute win by pounding the paint. Big men Brett Tauber and Canan O'Heron combined for 26 points, including 20 in the second half.

"For the first time we won a game with our inside game," UWSP head coach Bob Semling said. "(Tauber and O'Heron) really played well, they played tough. You have to be that versatile in this league where you can win different ways."

The Pointers rank third in the conference in three point percentage and, on average, just 21 of their 69 points per game come from forwards. Players said they had emphasized the post played and it finally paid off Wednesday night.

"It's definitely been a focus for us to try to get more paint points and post touches, so having a game like that really helped us," Tauber said.

"It's huge," Mark Nelson, a guard who averages 7.8 points per game, said. "Knowing that we can go down to them and have confidence that they can make a post move and score or make a post move and kick out. Having confidence in them and knowing that they can make plays is really big for us guards."

The Pointers are back in action Saturday night when they host UW-Eau Claire at Quandt Gymnasium. Tip-off is set for 7:00 p.m.

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