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Quick Start Pushes Denver Past ORU, 73-64

Quick Start Pushes Denver Past ORU, 73-64

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The Basics
Score: Denver 73 – Oral Roberts 64
Record: Denver (8-12, 2-4) – ORU (7-15, 3-4)
Location: Tulsa, Okla. (Mabee Center)

TULSA, Okla. – Denver jumped out to an 11-0 lead, and although Oral Roberts tied the game in the second half, the Golden Eagles never led in a 73-64 loss Saturday at the Mabee Center. The four newest members of the ORU Athletics Hall of Fame (Christy Carter (women's golf), Calvin Garrett (men's basketball), David Castillo (baseball) and Patricia Menezes (volleyball)) were honored at halftime of the game.

In ORU's three previous Summit League home games, ORU led for more than 30 minutes in each game, but never got to play from in front of Denver.

ORU got 16 points from Austin Ruder, his third highest scoring effort of the season and the highest since his last full game before an injury when he scored 20 against Oakland. ORU had four different players score at least 10 points as Emmanuel Nzekwesi, Sam Kearns and Albert Owens each chipped in 10 points. Chris Miller was ORU's leading rebounder with a career best eight boards.

Daniel Amigo took over in the second half for Denver, finishing with a game high 20 points. Joe Rosga and Jake Pemberton each added 13 points.

ORU out-rebounded Denver 32-23, but the Pioneers shot 57 percent from the field.

Turning Point
R.J. Fuqua picked the pocket of Rosga and called timeout to save the possession for ORU, with Owens scoring out of the break to tie the game at 50-50 with 9:28 to play. Denver then mounted an 11-1 run over the next three minutes to stretch it back to a double digit deficit for the Golden Eagles.

Individual Leaders
Oral Roberts: Ruder led the scoring efforts with 16 points on five made 3-pointers, while Fuqua dished out a team high four assists. Miller led ORU in rebounds with eight.
Amigo scored 20 while Christian Mackey grabbed four rebounds, three offensive boards, in just six minutes of action.

Inside the Box Score
- ORU shot 45 percent (25-55) for the game thanks to a 51 percent clip in the second half. The Golden Eagles connected on 30 percent (8-26) from 3-point range and hit 6-10 free throws.

- Denver shot 57 percent (27-47) from the field and 58 percent (7-12) from 3-point range. The Pioneers were 12-19 from the free throw line.

- ORU had a 32-23 rebounding advantage, including 14 offensive rebounds, which led to an 18-4 advantage in second chance points.

- ORU turned the ball over 14 times, including six in the first six minutes of the game, and the Pioneers used the giveaways to a 15-7 lead in points off turnovers.

News and Notes
- ORU had a Hall of Fame crowd of 5,023 Saturday night, the largest crowd at the Mabee Center since January 23, 2016 when ORU had 5,308 fans as the Golden Eagles hosted Omaha.  

- Saturday marked the first time this season and third time in his career in which Miller has been ORU's leading rebounder.

- Both team's leading scorer, ORU's Ruder with 16 and Denver's Amigo with 20, came off the bench for their respective teams.  

- ORU is now 1-12 this season when the opponent gets to the free throw line more often than the Golden Eagles. Denver shot 19 free throws and ORU shot 10.

Up Next
ORU will take a week off from Summit League play, hosting East Texas Baptist (January 23) and Nebraska Christian (January 27) to fill a gap left by IUPUI when it switched to the Horizon League before the season started.   

For the latest information on ORU men's basketball, follow @ORUMBB on Twitter or Instagram, or go to Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the ORU Athletics Front Row App at  or the ORU Golden Eagles Live App in iTunes or the Google Play Store. For tickets, visit or call 495-7ORU (7678).


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