Lakeland finishes season sweep of Maranatha
Athletics - posted on 1/28/2010
The Lakeland men's basketball team picked up its second road win of the season with a 72-59 victory at Maranatha Baptist in a Northern Athletics Conference showdown Thursday in Watertown, Wis.
With the win, the Muskies, who had lost five of their last six entering the game, move within one game of first place in the NAC North Division.
"We played with a lot of energy tonight," Lakeland coach Aaron Aanonsen said. "Part of our focus was to be more aggressive on the defensive end, and we forced 23 turnovers as a result. It was a fun way to play ... the Maranatha crowd was phenomenal, so it was just a great atmosphere for a college basketball game."
Lakeland (8-10 overall, 5-5 NAC) was led by sophomore forward Jake Schwarz, who shot 11-for-22 from the field and finished with 30 points and nine rebounds, both team highs.
The two teams combined for 43 turnovers, but the Muskies offset their miscues by shooting 49 percent from the field and 70 percent (7-for-10) from 3-point range. Lakeland also made 17-of-19 from the free throw line, including 15-of-17 in the second half.
"We pounded the ball inside, got a lot of paint touches and played from the inside-out," Aanonsen said. "That was very important. As a result, we controlled the tempo and got to the free throw line."
The Crusaders converted 40 percent of their field goal attempts, 35.7 percent from 3-point range and just 5-of-14 from the charity stripe.
After Schwarz (Sheboygan, Wis.) knocked down a 3-pointer with 2:30 remaining in the first half, the Muskies hung onto the lead for the remainder of the contest.
Maranatha (5-11, 1-10) came within one point at two separate points in the second half, but Lakeland extended its lead to double digits midway through the half and extended its advantage to 16 at the 1:43 mark. The Muskies shot 52.2 percent in the frame.
Sophomore guard Josh Regal (Suring, Wis.) posted 12 points for the Muskies. Senior guard Khendal Andrews (Kankakee, Ill.) and junior forward Trevor McKown (Hot Springs, S.D.) tallied 10 points apiece.
In his first start of the season, sophomore guard Eric Vandivier (Mt. Prospect, Ill.) contributed with five rebounds and a team-high six assists.
"'Vandy' brought a ton of energy," Aanonsen said. "He started almost half our games last year as a freshman ... we knew he'd come in and compete."
Lakeland continues its three-game road swing this Saturday at Wisconsin Lutheran at 3:15 p.m.
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