INDIANAPOLIS – Andrew Jordan had a career night and KC Earls hit the big shot as the Marian men’s basketball team defeated Mount Vernon Nazarene, 83-78 in overtime Tuesday night on John Grimes Court. Marian is 7-1 overall and 1-0 in the Crossroads League with the win.
Marian’s offense clicked early as the Knights started with a 9-0 run, but Mount Vernon fought its way back to take a 13-12 lead with 12 minutes to play. Andrew Jordan sparked the Knights with five points and five rebounds before the first media timeout. The two teams went back and forth and were tied 18-18 with 7:40 to play. Jordan’s hustle and muscle down low keyed another Marian run as the Knights scored 13 unanswered points. During the run Jordan had two offensive rebounds and scored three points.
Mount Vernon ended the run with a free throw at the 4:09 mark and went on a 6-0 run to trim the lead down to seven. However, Marian refused to fold and a pair of Mark Albers threes put the Knights back up by double digits. Wes Stowers drilled a pull-up jumper at the buzzer to give Marian a 41-30 halftime lead. Stowers, Sterling Brown and Jordan were all in double figures at the break.
Samuel Guymon and Christian Stewart opened the second half with easy buckets in the paint and Jordan added a three as Marian’s lead grew to 14 at the first media timeout. The Knights maintained the double digit lead until the 9:13 mark when the Cougars trimmed it to nine. The two teams went back and forth and MVNU was able to cut the lead to six with six minutes remaining.
Mount Vernon extend their run to nine unanswered points and pulled within two before a Jordan free throw with 3:45 to play. A bucket on the other end brought the Cougars’ within one, but Marian responded with a 7-0 run that was punctuated by an Albers three to make it 70-62 with 1:34 on the clock.
However, the Cougars weren’t dead yet as a pair of buckets from Jevon Knox and two free throws from Jacob Paul put Mount Vernon down one with 15.9 seconds remaining. With full court pressure applied, Mount Vernon nearly stole the inbounds pass on the ensuing possession, but Brown was able to scoop up the loose ball and split a pair of free throws to make it a two-point game. Knox answered with a layup to tie the game with 4.2 seconds remaining. A halfcourt heave from Brown bounced off the rim and the game went to overtime.
In overtime, Brett Vipperman found his offense after struggling thoughout regulation. He scored all seven points for MVNU, but Brown and Stowers combined for six to keep pace. With 50.8 seconds left, KC Earls drilled a three to give Marian an 80-78 lead. It was Earls’ first and only field goal of the night and it proved to be the game winner.
Marian finished 23-of-66 from the field, but did damage at the free throw line, making 29-of-36 attempts. The Knights also won the rebounding battle 41-40 and committed only 11 turnovers in 45 minutes of play. Stowers and Brown each scored 21 points, while Jordan was sensational on both ends of the floor, finishing with 20 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. Albers was also in double figures with 11 points.
The Knights will be back at home Saturday against Cincinnati-Clermont at 5 p.m.