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KIRKLAND, Wash. - Northwest U defeated Trinity Western 96-70 in their season opener Friday night in the Aldercrest Auto Rebuild Classic.

Trinity Western was led by Vartan Tanielian who finished with 17 points on 7 for 16 shooting. Posgos Trunyan and Aaron Paetkau each scored 11 points as TWU shot 36% for the night.

Senior Kaelan Hicks dropped in 20 for the Eagles.

The Eagles (1-0) shot 46% for the game and out rebounded the Spartans (1-2) 50-39 including 14 offensive rebounds. Jasdeep Singh added 12 rebounds for a double-double.

The Eagles wasted no time in establishing the lead as they jumped out to a 25-9 lead in the first 11:27 of the game after a 3-pointer by Josh Meyer and two free throws by Daniel Ghebremichael. Trinity Western would close the gap to 29-22 after two free throws, but with three minutes to go in the half, NU would go up by 13 points, 43-30. A trey by Jasdeep Singh with 33 seconds on the clock would give NU a 48-38 lead at halftime.

Northwest U would slowly build their lead in the second half and Kaelan Hicks driving lay-up along the baseline would give NU one of their largest leads at 18 points, 71-53. With 5:51 to go on the game, Christian Hakilimali's free throw would make it an 86-61 Eagle lead as they would maintain the distance the remainder of the game.

TWU Head Coach Aaron Muhic
"We are not competing consistently enough on defence. Competing needs to mean more to our team. Vartan scored well for us and was patient with his offense. He scored 17. But again we need to be a team that competes with purpose and heart.

NU head coach Jeff Drinkwine
"I was really pleased the team maintained their focus the entire game and we got a lot of significant minutes from players who came off the bench for us. Our level of play did not drop when we changed personnel. It was a good way to begin the season."

Next Up:
Play continues in the Aldercrest Auto Rebuild Classic tomorrow night as Northwest U plays Fraser Valley in the second game at 7 p.m. with Trinity Western playing Eastern Oregon at 5 p.m.