Trojans Return to Win Column in Final Non-League Test


ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The 24th-ranked Taylor men’s basketball team returned to action on Friday night at Concordia, ending a three-game skid with a 75-68 road win.


The game was tightly contested throughout the first half but back-to-back hoops from Ryan Robinson opened a 29-26 Taylor lead at the 8:06 mark and a pair of trifectas from Keaton Hendricks pushed the spread to 37-31, before TU finished the stanza with a 40-36 lead.


A 19-9 run over the first half of the second period put the Trojans in charge with a 59-45 cushion and Taylor got back-to-back triples from Evan Crowe and Mason Degenkolb to counter a Concordia (6-10) spurt and push the margin back to 13 with 5:17 to play.


The hosts made one final comeback bid with a 9-0 stretch over the next 4:38 to close to within four points with less than one minute to play but Tim Fleming ended the drought with a pair of free throws and Robinson sealed the win with four free throws in the final 25 seconds.


Robinson led four Trojans in double figures with 16 points, while adding three assists and one steal. Degenkolb followed with 14 points, five rebounds and three assists, with Jake Heggeland turning in another double-double showing with 11 points, 10 boards and one block. Vincent Miranda also cracked double figures with 10 points and five rebounds.


TU shot just 40.6 percent from the field but turned in a solid all-around effort by sinking eight-of-18 attempts from deep and connecting on 15-of-16 free throws. Taylor also outrebounded CU by eight, committed only seven turnovers and held an opponent under 70 points for the first time in its past 10 outings.


No. 24 Taylor (10-6, 1-3 CL) will open a stretch of 14-straight Crossroads League games to close the regular season when it travels to Huntington (6-9, 2-2 CL) for an 8:00 pm start on Wednesday, January 3.