NORTH MANCHESTER, IND. – The first of two clashes between Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference rivals Manchester University and Anderson University produced a tale of two halves Wednesday, Jan. 15.
The host Spartans continued their recent strong play of late in the first 20 minutes. MU hit 16-of-25 from the field which included going three-for-four from beyond the arc to grab a 41-25 halftime lead. However, the visiting Ravens (3-11 overall, 3-4 HCAC), also coming in with a recent hot streak on the court, answered with a 56-point second half. It was highlighted by a 19-of-30 overall and eight-of12 three-point field goal shooting display that rallied them to an 81-71 win.
"We knew Anderson had some good shooters," Coach Brad Nadborne said. "We emphasized not leaving them. Our first half effort was great holding them down to minimal numbers. In the second half, they got away from us.
"Ultimately, we need to get better defensively throughout the game," he added. "We're not where we need to be right now. We're working on it and trying to improve that area."
Junior forward Jon Thompson (Rushville, Ind.) continued his torrid offensive play. His 26-point effort, which included a masterful 11-of-11 effort from the free throw line, guided the Spartans (2-12 overall, 1-5 HCAC). He also blocked two Raven shot attempts and was one of five players with a steal. Junior guard Caleb Jackson (New Castle, Ind.) added 10 points off the bench, while fellow junior guard Grant Newlin (Muncie, Ind.) just missed a double-double with nine points and eight rebounds and also dished out a team-high five assists.
MU takes to the road for a 3 p.m. tipoff at Hanover College Saturday, Jan. 18.
NOTES: Thompson reeled off his sixth straight double-figure scoring game. He's been at-or-above 20 points in four of those contests … Sophomore forward Jarod Schrock (Logansport, Ind.) ended with two blocked shots marking his third time with multiples in a game … Newlin's assist and rebound numbers were each personal single-game season highs.