Case Western Reserve University junior forward T.J. Duckett scored a career-high 21 points and registered the first double-double of his career, but it was not enough for the Spartans, who fell to Baldwin Wallace University 90-76 in the teams' opening game of the 2016-17 season at Horsburgh Gymnasium on Tuesday night.
Duckett came off the bench to connect on eight-of-12 shots from the field and added a career-best 13 rebounds to lead all players in Tuesday's game. He surpassed his previous career-best mark of 10 points, recorded three times last season.
Junior forward David Black added 16 points, and senior guard Javier Alvarez shot six-of-10 from the field and finished the game with 14 points and four assists. Junior forward Eric Black added 11 points, eight rebounds and two blocks on Tuesday night.
The Spartans came out firing in their first game under new Head Coach Todd McGuinness, taking a 19-12 lead with 12:59 remaining in the first half on a jumper by Alvarez. The Yellow Jackets would battle back to tie the game at 25-25 by the 9:23 mark, before the Spartans regained a five-point lead, 35-30, after Duckett converted an and-one and connected on a layup with 5:29 remaining in the half. From there, Baldwin Wallace went on an 8-0 run to take the lead, and scored 19 of the final 30 points in the half, taking a three-point advantage, 49-46, heading into the break.
The Yellow Jackets would break the game open with a 17-1 run in the second half, taking a 73-57 lead with 9:22 remaining in the game. Case Western Reserve would close the lead to as few as 12 points after layups by freshman Daniel Chambers with 1:40 left and freshman Nick Aloi with 36 seconds remaining, but would not get any closer.
The Spartans finished the game shooting 48.4% from the field (31-for-64).
Cam Kuhn and Jake Fetherolf each led the Yellow Jackets with 18 points apiece in the game.
Next up for the Spartans will be the annual Stephanie Tubbs Jones Tournament at Case Western Reserve on Friday, November 18th and Saturday, November 19th. CWRU will open play at the tournament against Trinity University (Texas) at 8:00 p.m. on Friday.