Grider Bounces Back With 22 In Exhibition Loss To Davenport

Twelve Maple Leafs score or grab rebound in loss

By Chandler Ingle
Sports Information Intern

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Seven players reached double digits for the Davenport University Panthers, who cracked the century mark in defeating the Goshen College men’s basketball team 105-77 in exhibition play Saturday afternoon at the DU Student Center.

Senior Christian Grider bounced back from his scoreless performance Wednesday evening as the forward commenced action from 3-point land within the first 30 seconds. Grider and roommate Devin Heath-Granger combined to score Goshen’s first 12 points as the Maple Leafs (4-3) raced to an early 12-4 advantage. But that was as good as it could get for the Maple Leafs, as the Panthers (3-1 in NCAA Division II) retaliated with 18 unanswered to place themselves in the driver’s seat midway through the first frame.

Grider went on to pace GC with a team-high 22 points while Heath-Granger and Logan Primerano tallied 11 apiece. Primerano led Goshen with five rebounds and Heath-Granger nailed down the assist column with four.

The Panther lead extended to as much as 36 on two separate occasions in the second half, allowing Goshen head coach Jon Tropf to empty his bench. Freshman Brandon Watkins took advantage of his 10 minutes of action to punch in seven points, which would have been a career high had the game not counted as an exhibition. Twelve of Goshen’s 13 players scored in the game and a dozen Maple Leafs grabbed rebounds.

“I’m very pleased with how we played today,” Tropf said. “We had great energy from the opening tip and played our best defensive first half of the season. We fought through adversity and competed the whole time against a very tough team.”

On the flip side, Saturday’s contest was not considered an exhibition for the Panthers, which means their statistics will count and the victory will be placed in the win column for DU. The 100-plus point performance was the Panthers’ second straight and their third straight victory overall.

Panther guard and leading scorer Delano Smith led DU with 20. Wes Webbert and Robbie Bramhill followed atop the scoring column with 15 and 14 respectively. Three other Panthers posted 12 while Braima Hai topped off the double-digit scorers with 10. Hai, Janeau Joubert and Avery Hudson each added six assists.

Davenport finished the game shooting 56.1 percent from the floor, including a 23-for-36 mark (63.9 percent) in the second half, while sinking 23 of 29 foul shots. Goshen also shot better than even in the second half, with its 18-for-34 clip good for 52.9 percent.

The Maple Leafs will look to rebound from their defensive mishaps as they begin Crossroads League play this coming Tuesday against Huntington University. Tip-off for the home tilt is set for approximately 8 p.m., following the 6 p.m. start of the GC women’s contest against HU.

Goshen College is an affordable, nationally-ranked Christian liberal arts college in Northern Indiana known for leadership in intercultural and international education, sustainability and social justice.