May 15, 2016
Anderson paces Slam in big Back 2 Bellingham Battle win
The Bellingham Slam rallied from an early deficit against the Western Washington University Alumni and won the 2016 Back to Bellingham Battle going away, 133-106, on Sunday at the Wade King Center on Western's campus.
The exhibition was the second meeting between the two teams in what has become an annual event during the university's busy Back to Bellingham alumni weekend. The Slam also prevailed in the inaugural game last May, held at Carver Gymnasium.
The Alumni, featuring an amalgam of former Viking greats from the last 15 years, used hot shooting to build an early 20-point lead, at 32-12, late in the first quarter.
But the Slam outscored WWU 26-10 in the second quarter to take a 46-44 lead into halftime. Forward Nick Moore scored eight points in the quarter to aid in the comeback for the Slam, and finished with 15.
The third quarter proved to be the game's most competitive, featuring eight lead changes. A stretch in the frame's middle stages that saw outgoing senior guard Ricardo Maxwell score 12 of the Vikings' 16 points during the run helped give WWU a 70-68 lead with 2:52 left.
The two sides traded baskets several times before Slam forward Tyler Amaya ended the third quarter with a buzzer-beating putback, putting the Slam up 82-79.
The fourth quarter was all Bellingham as the Slam offense flexed its muscles, scoring 51 points and putting the game out of reach for the Alumni. Bellingham opened the period with a 14-2 run in the first three minutes and never looked back, eventually building their lead to over 20 with five minutes left.
Guard Morris Anderson led the Slam with 24 points. Amaya and guard Jacob Stevenson also cracked the 20-point plateau with 22 and 21, respectively.
Maxwell led five Alumni players in double figures with 22 points. Guard Grant Dykstra, WWU's all-time leading scorer, finished with 21, while forward Calin Schell also had an impressive outing, posting a double-double with 14 points and a game-high 17 rebounds.