MLC Guts One Out at Crown
ST. BONIFACIUS, Minn. - The men's basketball team survived a game a three-point shooting barrage to begin the second half to come away with an 84-79 win at Crown Friday night.
Several players made key plays for the Knights down the stretch, with Justin Danell (New Ulm, Minn./MVL) hitting two key three-pointers in the final three minutes, including one with just 52 seconds remaining that gave the Knights an 82-79 lead. Nathan Bauer (Lake Mills, Wis./Lakeside) also made several key shots down the stretch, while Jake Unke (New Ulm, Minn./MVL) helped ice the game with two free throws with 20 seconds remaining to push the MLC lead to the final five-point margin.
After the Knights took a 39-33 lead into the half, Crown stormed back with a 15-5 run to begin the second with the help of three baskets from downtown to take a 48-44 lead. Several minutes later, after the Storm had hit several more three-pointers, the Knights found themselves in a 58-50 hole with just under 12 minutes to play.
Undaunted, the Knights roared back with a 15-6 run, keyed by several big shots by Greg Holzhueter (Mankato, Minn./MVL) and several others, to take back the lead at 65-64 with 8:31 to play.
Over the final nine minutes, the lead changed hands seven times, with the score also being tied twice until Danell's final three-pointer finished off the Storm.
The Storm came after the Knights for much of the game from beyond the three-point line, making nine of their first 15 attempts from beyond the arc, but missed their final six attempts and finished 9-21 for the game. MLC also shot the ball well from distance, finishing 7-11 for the game.
MLC finished with five players in double figures, and all but one of the 12 players that played in the game for the Knights scored. Danell led the team with 12 points, while Josh Danell (New Ulm, Minn./MVL) and Bauer finished with 11 apiece. Holzhueter and Justin Eternick (Waterloo, Wis./Lakeside) had ten apiece, with Holzhueter also adding seven rebounds and six assists.
With the win, MLC improved to 5-13 overall and 2-7 in the UMAC, while Crown dropped to 3-16 on the season and 3-6 in league action.
The Knights will return to action on Friday, February 12, when they host UM-Morris. The game is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m.[BOX SCORE]