Christlieb scored nine points, picked off four Transylvania University passing attempts for steals, blocked a shot and grabbed five rebounds in a starting role. Minehart came off the bench for Coach Josh Dzurick's crew and narrowly missed compiling a double-double in 22 minutes, scoring nine points and gathering seven rebounds to go along with three blocked shots.
Despite those efforts, the Spartans dipped to 4-11 overall and 3-5 in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference, falling to the perennial league power Pioneers 68-45. After the home side jumped out to a quick 13-4 lead in the first period, MU answered by tallying six of the final eight points to close the stanza at 15-10. It was as close as they would get, with TU opening as large as a 27-point lead.
The Spartans concluded a set of back-to-back conference road tests as well as the first half of the loop season by facing off against rival Anderson University Wednesday, Jan. 18. Tip-off time at AU's O.C. Lewis Gymnasium is 7:30 p.m.