NORTH MANCHESTER, IND. – Gerad Good knows the recipe for why his Manchester University men's basketball team has caught fire of late.
Just four days removed from a dominating 82-63 win over Defiance College that knocked the Yellow Jackets out of Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament territory, MU, improving to 9-16 and 7-11 in the league, put a tight lock on the sixth seed for next weekend's event at Collier Arena on Hanover College's campus in Hanover, Ind., with a resounding 93-66 Senior Day win over Transylvania University.
"The guys are just having fun," Good admitted. "We're coming together as a team at the right time as everybody is believing in everybody else. We knew it could be like it has been this last week of the regular season … we just needed to put everything together."
"I've also got to credit how hard we've been playing defense of late," he added. "It's helped get us transition opportunities for good offensive looks."
Eleven Spartans got on the scoreboard inside Stauffer-Wolfe Arena much to the delight of nearly 500 fans. The sophomore duo of guard Adrian Johnson (Indianapolis, Ind.) and forward Evan Romie (Anna, Ohio) led the attack that hit almost 55 percent from the field and better than 40 percent from outside the arc. They each tallied 22 points, as Johnson added four assists, four rebounds and a blocked shot, and Romie tallied five rebounds. Freshman guard Erik Bell (Evansville, Ind.) resumed his strong play of late with 10 points, eight assists and six steals.
Much like Wednesday's fast start against Defiance, the Black and Gold trailed 2-0 and 4-2 but took off on a 17-2 run and didn't look back. TU rallied to as close as five later over the first 20 minutes, but the home side scored 50 points in the second stanza to insure the victory.
Manchester University takes the sixth seed into the 2017 HCAC tournament, the program's second straight advancement to the field, Friday, Feb. 24. They face off against third seeded and league rival Anderson University at 8 p.m. in one of two quarterfinals.