Hanover snaps streak with win at MSJ

Four players reached double digits as the Hanover College men’s basketball team collected their first win of the new year with 81-58 victory against the College of Mount St. Joseph (Ohio). The match-up was held Wednesday, Jan. 2, at the Harrington Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Senior guard Ryan Nowicki (Westfield, Ind.) notched a game-high 15 points as the Panthers improved to a 3-2 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference record and 6-6 overall.  Mount St. Joseph was previously undefeated in league play and falls to 5-7 overall and 4-1 HCAC.

Senior forward Brian Gunter (Louisville, Ky.) scored on the first possession of the game and the Panthers surged to 12-6 lead. Gunter led Hanover with six rebounds to accompany 13 points.

A V.J. Evans three-pointer cut the Panther lead to 14-11 at the 12:40 mark before freshman forward Michael Van Kleunen (Mason, Ohio) scored five straight points to spark a 13-3 Hanover run.

Freshman forward Jacob Steinhart (Mount Vernon, Ind.) hit a three-pointer with three seconds left on the clock, pushing the margin to 43-24 at intermission. Steinhart finished the game with 11 points.

The Panthers shot 50.0 percent (17-of-34) from the field in the first half and sank all four free-throw attempts, while holding the Lions to 16.7 percent (1-of-6) from three-point range.

Hanover quickly pressed the lead to 21 points off a Desmond Marks (Bloomington, Ind.) free throw 1:34 into the second period.

A Ken Kunkel three-pointer sparked a 15-3 run, cutting the Panthers' lead to 50-41 with 12:40 to play.

The teams traded buckets before sophomore point guard Tim Bass (Indianapolis, Ind.) found Nowicki for a run-breaking three-pointer at the 9:11 mark.

Bass scored 11 points, dished four assists and collected five steals, as the Panthers snapped a five-game losing streak.

Leading 59-47, the Panthers erupted for a 21-5 run, putting the game out of reach.

The Panthers continued their hot shooting in the second half, hitting 6-of-15 three-pointers (40.0%) and 50.0 percent (13-of-26) from the field. For the game, the Panthers shot 50.0 percent from the floor on 30-of-60 shooting and 71.4 percent (10-of-14) from the free-throw line.

Hanover forced 17 turnovers and secured 10 steals.

Ken Kunkel led the Lions with 14 points, while David Mann chipped in 10.

Hanover vs. Mount St. Joseph (Ohio) statistics