FOND DU LAC, Wis. - Marian University men's basketball (0-8, 0-4 NACC) nearly came back from a double-digit deficit in the final 10 minutes of their NACC contest against Aurora, but the Spartans were able to hold on with a final of 91-84.
It was all Aurora University early in the first half as they opened the scoring with a 7-0 run to take the early 10-1 lead. Aurora would then go on to extend their lead to 23-8 after a Spartan three-pointer. The Sabres would battle back around the 2:32 mark of the first half, but the Spartans would take the lead into halftime 47-33.
Aurora opened the game shooting 17-34 (.500) from the field including 9-17 (.529) from beyond the arc. The Sabre offense was extremely balanced in the opening half with six Sabres scoring five or more points.
In the second half, it was a rejuvenated Sabre offense that pulled the Spartan lead within 14 off a three-pointer from sophomore Kelvin Jones. The Sabres continued to chip away and a Marian dunk by sophomore Ryan Biffert along with a three-pointer by sophomore Evan Hansen would cut the Aurora led to 10 with 7:19 to play.
Off a Spartan turnover, the Sabres would shrink the lead to single digits with a three-pointer from freshman Armon Osbourne. Back-to-back layups by Hansen would shrink the Spartan lead to two with under three minutes left in regulation and eventually down to one with a pair of free throws from Hansen. This would be as close as Marian would get, however, as the Spartans were able to hold on in the final minute for the 91-84 NACC win.
The Sabres were able to outscore the Spartans 51-44 in the second half shooting 20-35 (.571) from the field.
The MU offense was led by Hansen who finished the game with a career-high 23 points and three steals. Junior Alex Manhardt chipped in 13 points along with seven rebounds. Freshman Charlie Witek came off the bench to add 12 points to the Sabre effort.
Marian next hits the road Saturday, Dec. 10 for a 4:15 p.m. tip against Rockford.
(78-79), (79-80), (80-81), (82-83), (83-84),
(87-88), (89-90), (90-91), (98-99), (99-00),
NCAA Tournaments (2)