Coe Not Enough; Purdue Northwest Men Fall to Spring Arbor, 91-69
Spring Arbor, Mich. – Senior Tyree Coe (Fishers, Ind./Fishers) finished with a team-leading 21 points, but the Purdue Northwest men’s basketball team fell behind in the first half and never recovered in a 91-69 road loss to No. 16 ranked NAIA foe Spring Arbor University (Mich.) at the SAU Fieldhouse Friday afternoon in Spring Arbor, Mich. With the game tied at 20-20 midway through the first half, the host Cougars went on a 17-1 run that put them in control for the rest of the game.
Junior Chris Nunn (Anderson, Ind./Liberty Christian) was the only other PNW player to score in double figures Friday finishing with 10 points. Sophomore Lukas Vilkovsky (Kosice, Slovakia/Get Better Academy) added nine points, while freshman Richard Robertson (Fort Wayne, Ind./Northrop) recorded seven points and a team-best seven rebounds. Rebounding was tough throughout the game for the Pride as the Cougars finished with 60 caroms on the day compared to just 42 by the visitors.
Back-to-back baskets by Coe nearly nine minutes into the first half helped PNW take an early 18-15 advantage. Richardson converted on a shot in the lane on the Pride’s next possession to keep his team in front, but SAU quickly tied the game with a lay-up on the other end and began a 13-0 surge that put the hosts up by double digits, 31-20.
The Cougars stayed ahead by double figures the rest of the first half and went into the locker room at the break holding a 49-32 lead. A free throw by Coe early in the second half trimmed the deficit down to 14, 54-40. Unfortunately for the Pride, that was as close as it got as Spring Arbor pushed its lead over 20 points over the game’s next four minutes. The Cougars kept the pressure on over the final 10 minutes building its advantage as high as 33 points.
Purdue Northwest (0-13 overall/0-5 GLIAC) returns to Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play after the New Year with a road game against Saginaw Valley State University (Mich.) on Thursday, January 4. The conference game is slated for a 7 p.m. CT start at James E. O’Neill Jr. Arena in University Center, Mich.