Bolstered by four players reaching double figures, Manchester University returned to Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action with big dividends Saturday, Jan. 2.
Senior forward Matt Brown (Hobart, Ind.) tallied 23 points that included a sparkling four-of-seven effort from outside the arc, while senior guard Brady Dolezal (Tipton, Ind.) had an impressive line, too, with 17 points, seven rebounds and four assists that helped pace the Spartans to a 95-64 win over Earlham College. Junior guard Chase Casteel (Monrovia, Ind.) and freshman guard Adrian Johnson (Indianapolis, Ind.) joined their teammates in double-figure scoring territory, as Casteel ended with 15 points, six rebounds, three assists and two steals, and Johnson turned in 10 points and a team-best seven assists.
MU, moving to 5-6 overall and 2-2 in the league, opened a 7-0 lead off the opening tip as part of compiling 19 of the game’s first 25 points. They didn’t look back, either, hitting at a blistering 58.1 percent clip from the field which included drilling 10 of 23 three-point field goal attempts.
The Spartans, looking to even their overall record and move over the .500 mark in conference play, return to action Wednesday, Jan. 6. Tipoff time is 7:30 p.m. inside the Spurlock Center on Franklin College’s campus.
NOTES: Brown’s 23-point outing was a personal single-game season high and his first 20-points-plus effort since February of last season … MU’s 10 made treys marked the most in a game since February of last year, too … The Spartans’ 95-point total was the program’s most since a win over Kalamazoo in November of 2012. It was the second time in the last three contests the Black and Gold have tallied 90-or-more on the scoreboard to help lift their points per game average to a season-best 75.4.
A fast start by Manchester University helped it weather a furious game-ending rally by Earlham College Saturday, Jan. 2.
The Spartans, improving to 4-7 overall and 2-2 in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference, scored 21 of the game’s first 30 points in route to building as large as a 23-point lead (50-27) in the third period. However, the Quakers, searching for their first league win, went on a 20-5 run from that point to cut the advantage to eight and got it all the way down to two possessions in the closing moments before the Black and Gold managed to close out the 69-64 decision.
Senior guard Katie Arterburn (Indianapolis, Ind.), closing a week in which she averaged over 21 points per contest and hit better than 64 percent from the outside the arc in two appearances, registered 25 points to go with three steals, six rebounds and two assists. Sophomore forward Samantha Bolen (Greenwood, Ind.) added 13 points, which featured a nine-of-10 effort from the free throw line.
The Spartans continue a brief two-game home stand Wednesday, Jan. 6. Franklin College comes to Stauffer-Wolfe Arena for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff.
NOTES: Arterburn’s scoring total, her third 20-point-plus outing, was a personal career single-game high … Despite not reaching double-digit scoring, the underclasswoman tandem of sophomore forward Tori Christlieb and freshman forward/center Maddy Minehart (Auburn, Ind.) contributed key statistical lines. Christlieb ended with five points, eight rebounds and a blocked shot, while Minehart ended with seven points and six rebounds.