In a showdown with a conference foe, it is often the younger team who crumbles first. Fortunately, the young John Carroll men’s basketball team passed their first Ohio Athletic Conference test.
The Blue Streaks overcame a 12-2 Heidelberg run to defeat the Student Princes, 83-77, on Saturday in Tiffin. It was also the conference opener for both teams.
Senior forward Kyle Hubbard led the way for the Blue Streaks, recording 23 points and 6 rebounds on 7-of-11 shooting. It was a career high in points for Hubbard, who now leads the team in scoring with 17.2 points per game in his four starts.
He reflected on his early successes despite the fatigue in coming off a full football season. “I didn’t envision myself playing this well coming from football and not being in basketball shape yet,” said Hubbard. “But leading the team in scoring is a great feeling.”
Freshman guard Danny Wallack contributed 16 points off the bench, while sophomore guard David Hendrickson scored 15 points on 5-of-13 shooting. The Blue Streaks shot 43.6 percent from the floor, but struggled from behind the arc (26.3 percent).
The Student Princes led by as many as nine in the first half, but were unable to hold the lead early in the second half. Wallack went on a 6-0 run to help the Blue Streaks back to the lead.
“I attribute [the comeback] to hard work in the film room and on the practice court,” Hubbard said. “Coach [Mike Moran] prepares us so well for our opponents, and his motto is, ‘Get the job done’.”
“That’s what we did,” Hubbard said.
Forward Nate Davis was the high scorer for Heidelberg, recording 17 points and 10 rebounds. Dane Givner also contributed 15 points and five assists of his own. Poor shooting and 21 second half turnovers ended Heidelberg’s chances of pulling out the win.
With the win, the Blue Streaks improved to 40-23 all-time against the Student Princes. It was the team’s fourth consecutive series win dating back to Jan. 19, 2011 and fourth consecutive win in Tiffin since Feb. 11, 2009.
John Carroll goes to 3-2 on the season and 1-0 in the OAC. Heidelberg falls to 4-2 overall and 0-1 in OAC play.
Editor’s Note: The Blue Streaks played host to the Mount Union Purple Raiders on Wednesday, Dec. 5. For results, box scores and more, go to www.jcusports.com