Spartans Get Back on Track with 63-50 Win at Adrian

Spartans Get Back on Track with 63-50 Win at Adrian

The Case Western Reserve University men's basketball team bounced back from a loss its last time out, rolling to a 63-50 win at Adrian College in Adrian, Michigan on Tuesday night.

The win raises the Spartans' overall record to 5-2, while Adrian dropped to 3-3 with the loss.

Making his first start of the season, sophomore guard Antonio Ionadi led the Spartans with a season-high 19 points (one shy of his career-high), shooting five-for-10 from three-point range in the game.  Junior forward Michael Hollis scored seven points and collected a career-best 17 rebounds, the most this season by a Spartan player, and junior guard Monty Khela added 10 points in the victory.

The Spartans defense was stifling in the first half, holding Adrian to just 18.8% shooting overall (six-of-32), including 0-for-10 from behind the three point line.  A pair of three pointers by Ionadi helped the Spartans take an early 8-2 lead with 16:59 to play in the first half.  Four quick points off the bench by Khela put CWRU ahead by nine, 17-18, with 12:03 to play in the period.  Adrian pulled the game back within three, 20-17, with 5:25 remaining in the half, but the Spartans closed the stanza on an 8-0 run with threes by freshman guard James Bittner and sophomore guard Sam Hansen, and a layup by Hollis, taking a game-high 11 point lead, 28-17, into the break.

The Spartans featured a well-rounded attack in the opening half, with eight different players scoring at least one point.  Ionadi's six points led the way for CWRU, while Hollis added five points and 11 rebounds in the opening period.

CWRU continued to build its lead in the second half.  A three-pointer by Khela with 15:12 to play put the Spartans in front 38-21, and CWRU would grab a game-high 18 point lead, 44-26, on a pair of free throws by Hollis with 9:14 to play.  After missing their first 15 three-point tries of the game, the Bulldogs hit three over a two-minute stretch to trim the Spartans' lead back to 44-34 with eight minutes left.  The Bulldogs cut the lead to single digits on a three-pointer by Tre'shon Heard with 3:49 to play, but sophomore guard Michael Volkening responded with a three of his own late in the shot clock to put CWRU back in front by 12, 56-44, with 3:19 to go.  Ionadi would close out the game with a pair of threes in the final 90 seconds of play to help put the contest out of reach.

Strong free throw shooting was a key for the Spartans in the second half of the game.  After shooting just five-of-12 from the charity stripe in the first half, CWRU rebounded with by shooting a stellar 18-of-20 on free throw attempts in the second.

Case Western Reserve will return home to host Kalamazoo College on Saturday, December 8th at 4:00 p.m. in its final game before the start of winter break.