Heath-Granger Matches Prough For #2 On Goshen Assist List In Defeat
Senior also sets rebounding career high, misses double-double by one bucket
MOUNT VERNON, Ohio — Devin Heath-Granger pulled into a tie for the second-most assists in Goshen College men’s basketball history on Tuesday in an 88-82 Crossroads League loss at Mount Vernon Nazarene University.
The senior registered his 504th career assist with 6:22 remaining, tying him with 1998 alum Roger Prough. Kenny Edwards, a 1981 graduate, holds the school record with 542.
Billy Geschke led all scorers with 23 points for the Maple Leafs (10-9, 3-4), who led 44-43 at halftime. Goshen took the lead with an 8-0 run, holding the Cougars (12-7, 4-3) without a basket for almost three minutes.
Geschke and Colton Noel hit back-to-back 3-pointers 25 seconds apart in the second half, capping an 8-2 lead that put the Maple Leafs up 54-47 at the 16:52 mark. The Cougars responded with 11 straight points, though, and when Geschke scored again 3:45 later, Mount Vernon Nazarene led 58-56.
The teams traded mini-runs over the next half-dozen minutes, with MVNU stretching its edge out to nine before Geschke and Funkhouser trimmed it back to 70-66; an Alhassan Barrie score, two of his 11 points, got Goshen back within 74-72 just inside the six-minute mark.
Goshen’s first possession with a chance to tie the game came two minutes later, when Funkhouser indeed tied the game with an old-fashioned three-point play at the 3:34 mark. On the ensuing possession, however, Brett Vipperman drew the foul for MVNU and hit two free throws to put the team back up two points. After a Maple Leaf turnover led to a 3-pointer, the deficit had respawned to five points with 151 seconds left.
Heath-Granger and Jeremiah Roberts traded scores on each team’s next trip while Geschke cut the lead back to three with 96 seconds left. After trapping the Cougars in the corner, Funkhouser nabbed a defensive rebound with 59 seconds left and Goshen down three.
Heath-Granger’s 3-pointer with 36 seconds left, which would have given him a double-double alongside a career-high 10 rebounds, rimmed out. Goshen sent Jacob Paul to the foul line on the other end; he missed the front end of a one-and-one, and after Barrie’s board, Goshen was in business again.
A second Maple Leaf shot was off the mark; after Paul made one of two on his next trip to the line, so was a third.
Funkhouser scored 13 points, Christian Grider 12 and Barrie 11 while Heath-Granger finished with eight. Noel added five boards for the Maple Leafs. Brett Vipperman led Mount Vernon Nazarene with 22 points and eight rebounds.
Neither team led by more than nine points in the game: Mount Vernon Nazarene finished with 39 rebounds to Goshen’s 27, but nearly gave that advantage back by turning the ball over 19 times to Goshen’s nine.
The Cougars shot 49.2 percent from the floor (31-for-63) while making all but four of their 22 foul shots. Goshen shot 33-for-73 (45.2 percent) overall, posting an uncharacteristically cold 5-for-19 mark (26.3 percent) beyond the arc.
Goshen seeks to return to the win column on Saturday in its second-to-last home game of the month, a 3 p.m. tip-off against Taylor University. The game is part of a doubleheader after the women’s game between the same two schools at 1.