Manchester University looks to resume its recent move up the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference standings Wednesday, Feb. 1. They begin the final month of the regular season with a clash against Bluffton University.
Game details: Tip-off time is 7:30 p.m. at the Sommer Center on BU's campus … Live statistics are available via a link at www.muspartans.com, the Internet home of Manchester University athletics … In recent series history, the Bluffton University women have won nine of the last 11 including a 57-29 decision at North Manchester in January.
Spartan Shorts: Coach Josh Dzurick's crew goes into the week sporting a 7-12 overall and 6-6 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference record. The Spartans are seventh in the league, trailing Franklin College and Hanover College by a game for a tie for fifth place … Manchester University scored nine of the game's first 11 points and used a sparkling 44-25 advantage on the glass to keep in front throughout of a conference match-up against Mt. St. Joseph Jan. 28. MU, earning its seventh win over the last 12 games, never trailed after the fleet beginning. They led by as much as 15 and didn't allow the host Lions to get any closer than four during the 40 minutes inside the Harrington Center. The paint play of junior forward/center Torrie Christlieb (Culver, Ind.) and sophomore forward/center Beth Schaefer (Fort Wayne, Ind.) combined for 24 caroms. While Schaefer finished with five points, each of which occurred at the free throw line, 12 boards and a pair of assists, Christlieb contributed her third career double-double. She went eight-of-12 from the field, grabbed 12 rebounds and dished out an assist. Senior guard Jenifer Lee (Rockville, Ind.) completed a 37-point week tallying 13 to go with two steals … In recent individual trends, Lee's seen her scoring average jump a point and a half (8-9.5) over her last three outings. She's averaging 17 points and three rebounds while hitting almost three treys per appearance in the span. The senior also harbors a run of nine straight games in which she's converted at least one three-point bucket including six occurrences in which she's made multiples. Christlieb's been among the conference's top rebounders over her last six contests, averaging eight per outing to help her season average jump from 4.3 to 5.6 pg. Her play on the boards has also aided her scoring average which has risen almost a point and a half (4.4-5.8) in the same stretch. Despite seeing a three-date run in points' double digits end at MSJ, sophomore guard Faith-Alexis Graham (Indianapolis, Ind.) has turned in an impressive four-game span of late. Her averages per contest are 12.5 points, five rebounds, three assists, and more than a steal along with converting at a stellar 71.4 percent clip at the free throw line over that course … Sophomore forward/center Beth Schaefer (Fort Wayne, Ind.); freshman guard Nicole Weaver (Fort Wayne, Ind.); Christlieb and Lee are all a part of the loop's statistical top 10. Schaefer's 5.9 rebounds per game are No. 10; Weaver's 81.6 percent free throw conversion is No. 4; Lee's 35.4 percent effort from outside the arc is eighth-highest; and Christlieb's .9 blocked shots per game is ninth-best.
Hanover Twinbill: MU takes on the Panthers Saturday, Feb. 4, at the SWA. Tip-off times are 1 p.m. for the women and 3 p.m. for the men.