NORTH MANCHESTER, IND. – Manchester University junior guard Adrian Johnson (Indianapolis, Ind.) put together a fantastic single-game effort Wednesday, Jan. 10, but it wasn't enough to get the Spartans over the hump.
Visiting Anderson University managed to keep the host Spartans off the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference win column, claiming a hard-fought 83-77 victory in front of better than 200 raucous fans at Stauffer-Wolfe Arena. While being able to fend off their conference rivals, they didn't have much of an answer for Johnson.
Reeling off his 20th successive double-digit scoring game, the junior was a perfect eight-of-eight at the free throw line, hit at a healthy 59 percent clip from the floor overall (13 of 22) and drained two of his three-point attempts in route to 36 points. His impressive outing didn't end there, as Johnson also grabbed seven rebounds, picked up three steals and dished off an assist. Fellow junior Justin Lukens made the scoreboard glow, too, turning in his first double-double in an MU uniform with 10 points and 14 rebounds while dishing off three assists.
The Ravens took advantage of a 29-of-38 performance at the free throw line to be able to turn away the Black and Gold. MU, dipping to 2-12 overall and 0-7 in the league, faltered early due to some cool first half shooting but rebounded to cut the lead to 44-32 at halftime. Coach Gerad Good's crew cranked up the defensive intensity in the second 20 minutes going to a half-court press that led to several visiting side turnovers and easy transition points. The home crowd was in near delirium, as the Anderson lead was brought down to as little as two and stayed within one possession until a 7-0 run in the final minute, all issued at the free throw line, iced the outcome.
The Spartans take to the road Saturday, Jan. 13. They face off against Transylvania University in a 3 p.m. tip-off.