The Anoka-Ramsey Community College Men's Basketball team opened the season on a strong note with two wins in the ARCC November Classic.
On Friday night the Golden Rams withstood a second half run from Madison College to prevail 93-86, while on Saturday Anoka-Ramsey topped Gogebic 89-70.
Against Madison the Golden Rams opened up a 20-9 lead eight minutes into the game after a layup from Murshid Mudricat Zuberi, but Madison responded with a 14-0 run to take a 23-20 lead.
Madison pulled within 29-28 with 2:27 left in the first half but the Golden Rams closed the period on a 9-1 run to take a 38-30 lead into halftime.
Madison would chip away at the deficit and would eventually pull within 72-66 with six minutes to play.
Castro would hit another layup and Jones would follow with a 3-pointer to extend the lead back to 11 points.
The Wolfpack answered again and cut the Golden Ram lead to 81-75 with 2:49 to play.
But two free throws from Castro and two from Dunlap provided just enough cushion for the Golden Rams to maintain the lead and get the win.
Madison shot 44.6 percent overall to Anoka-Ramsey's 43.5 percent, but the Golden Rams made ten 3's to eight for Madison and won the free throw battle 23-12.
Castro finished with 33 points making 9 of 17 overall and 4 of 7 from three to go with 11 of 14 from the free throw line.
Jones finished with 18 points and four rebounds.
Zuberi tallied 14 points and ten rebounds while Nate Soto also had a double-double with ten points and 15 rebounds.
On Saturday afternoon Anoka-Ramsey faced a Gogebic squad down two starters injured the previous day and came out flat before a 7-0 run put them up 28-20.
After a Gogebic basket Steven Colon hit a jumper for a 30-22 lead.
Jones scored five straight as part of a 7-0 run for the Golden Rams and the lead grew to 13 points.
Dunlap hit for six straight points late in the half and two Jones free throws gave Anoka-Ramsey a 47-30 lead at the break.
Gogebic scored the first four points of the second half, and following an Anoka-Ramsey timeout the Golden Rams rattled off 15 straight points to pull away with a 62-34 lead with 12 minutes left.
From there the Golden Rams would salt the game away and get their second win of the season.
Anoka-Ramsey shot 55.6 percent overall and made 10 of 27 threes. The Golden Rams forced 17 turnovers while committed just eight themselves.
Jones led the way with 19 points followed by 17 from Dunlap, 16 from Castro, and 15 from Colon.
Anoka-Ramsey will take on Dakota County Tech on November 17 at 3:00pm at the Target Center.