Seahawks trounce N.C. Wesleyan, break school record

UNCW broke the school record for largest margin of victory Tuesday night


Zachary Kilby/The Seahawk

Jake Boggs slams one down during UNCW’s matchup with N.C. Wesleyan on Nov. 19, 2019.

Noah Powers, Sports Editor

WILMINGTON — Jaylen Sims’ 26-point performance led UNC Wilmington (3-2) past North Carolina Wesleyan 113-53 on Tuesday night in Trask Coliseum.

The 60-point victory topped the previous record for margin of victory set back in 2014 as the Seahawks topped St. Andrews 105-47.

The matchup started out back and forth with the Seahawks taking a 24-17 lead. Following a timeout midway through the first half, UNCW took a 25-7 run and a 49-24 lead into the intermission.

The difference was handling NCWC senior and Wilmington native A.J. Frye in the low post. The 6-5, 250-pound center proved a tough task for the Seahawks to handle one-on-one, nearing the double-double mark (18 points and nine rebounds), but a change in defense allowed UNCW to limit his touches throughout the rest of the contest.

“I said ‘we’re going to start double-teaming the post because obviously, A.J. Frye is just too good for us to guard’,” said UNCW head coach C.B. McGrath. “If our big guys aren’t going to step up and try to guard him one-on-one, we have to do something else. We saw what happened at Davidson — it snowballed on us — we didn’t make a change until halftime [and] I wasn’t going to wait until halftime this time.”

The second half was all Seahawks as they outscored the Battling Bishops 64-29.

Joining Sims (10-13, 6-9 from three) atop the stat sheet was Jake Boggs, whose perfect night from the floor (8-8, 4-4 from three) earned him 20 points and eight rebounds. Shykeim Phillips also had a hot performance racking up 19 points and five assists on 8 of 10 shooting.

“I think what helped us out tonight was we knew what we had to do. We knew we had to come in and bounce back from the game on Saturday (against Davidson),” said Boggs. “We just came in with a game plan in mind, what coach had told us in practice yesterday, and I think things just worked out for us.”

On Saturday, the Seahawks suffered a humbling 87-49 loss to Davidson, so this matchup was integral for the confidence of the team.

“Seeing the ball go through the basket obviously gives the guys confidence,” said McGrath. “I [liked] our defensive intensity for about the last 30 minutes of the game.”

Of the multiple crowd reactions of the night, by far the loudest was when Brent Jenkins entered the game with 3:51 left to play. That reaction was topped only by the eruption when Jenkins hit his first three-pointer of the season.

“He works hard. Obviously, he’s got the respect of all of our guys,” said McGrath. “They want to see him get a chance. His role is get our guys prepared every day in practice by playing hard.”

UNCW will travel to Washington D.C. this weekend for the Battle for the Capital where the ‘Hawks will take on Cleveland State and Florida International on Friday and Saturday respectively. Both of those matchups are set for 1 p.m. tipoffs. UNCW will be back in Trask next Tuesday as it takes on Emory & Henry at 7 p.m.