Solomon Mangham finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and four blocks for the War Eagles.
“He does it all for us,” Woodward boys’ coach Anthony Thomas said. “He’s our biggest body. He can handle it, shoot and rebound it. He’s been doing that all year.”
The War Eagles (11-2 overall, 4-0 Region 6-AAA) are currently on a nine-game winning streak.
“We’re counting them one at a time,” Thomas said. “But we’re on a little roll right here.”
After the Wildcats seemed to get the type of shots they wanted in the first half, the War Eagles put a stop to that, allowing just six points in the third quarter to take control.
“We knew they were very good in transition and we knew we couldn’t let them have easy buckets and we gave up 40 points in the first half,” Thomas said. “We went back to the game plan, made sure we were re-emphasizing things as far as staying in front of people, getting good traps and finishing the possession with a block out. We did very well in the third quarter.”
Williams, who didn’t score in the first half, notched seven points in the quarter, including a breakaway dunk that would give Woodward the lead for good.
In the closing period, the War Eagles continued to own a slight edge until Benjamin Russell nailed a 3-pointer, Williams made a steal and layup and Harrison capped the 7-0 burst with a two-handed dunk for a 66-55 advantage.
“With our team, it’s going to be somebody different every night,” Thomas said. “That is how we are built. Guys have off nights and they trust their teammates to step up.”
Phil Cofer led Whitewater with 17 points, including three impressive dunks, and Junaid Olusesi scored 11 points.
In the second quarter, Woodward trailed by 13 points but Banks (three 3-pointers in the frame) and Harrison, who brought the crowd to its feet with an alley-oop finish over Cofer on an inbounds’ play, kept the War Eagles close.
“Denzel Banks had a great game,” Thomas said. “He shot the ball very well. Christian was very active not only on the glass but defensively. He made some nice finishes around the rim.”
On Tuesday, Woodward visits St. Pius (9-4, 2-1) and eyes its fifth consecutive win in the series.