TU Men Upset No. 14 Cougars with Three-Point Attack
SPRING ARBOR, Mich. – The Taylor men’s basketball team scored a much-needed win on Tuesday, upsetting No. 14 Spring Arbor on the road with a 74-67 victory to secure a third-straight regular season sweep of the Cougars on the hardwood.
The Trojans put five players in double figures and got all but two points in the game from the group of Evan Crowe, Mason Degenkolb, Jake Heggeland, Vincent Miranda and Ryan Robinson on a combined 26-of-52 shooting.
Much of the damage came from three-point territory, where TU finished 11-of-23 for a 47.8-percent rate. Taylor repeatedly turned away Spring Arbor (18-5, 6-5 CL) runs with long-range makes over the final stanza, knocking down seven-of-13 looks from deep in the second half.
Crowe led the way, sinking four-of-five triples for 20 points to go with five rebounds and two assists, while Degenkolb finished with 18 points, seven rebounds and three helpers. Crowe carried the load for Taylor in the opening half with 14 points on five-of-six shooting, before Degenkolb sparked the offense with 14 points after the break. Heggeland followed with 13 points on six-of-seven shooting, while Miranda finished with 11 points and Robinson ended with 10 points, six assists and two steals, playing the closing role with eight of TU’s final 10 points.
Taylor never trailed by more than two points in the game, facing that deficit after SAU scored to take a 2-0 lead. TU used a 10-1 stretch to take a 17-9 lead and pushed the spread to 34-23.
The early dominance evaporated with a scoreless stretch spanning from the 2:07 mark of the first half to the 14:49 point of the second, as SAU rallied to within two points before Degenkolb put Taylor back in the scoring column with a three-ball.
Degenkolb went on to score TU’s first 10 points of the second half to help push the spread back to eight, but the Cougars clawed back to take a 49-48 lead before back-to-back triples from Miranda pushed the Trojans back in front at 54-51.
Another trifecta gave TU the lead once again, as Crowe connected on a four-point play for a 64-60 edge, and Robinson delivered a pair of daggers from downtown in the final two minutes, while netting eight of Taylor’s final 10 points to secure the 74-67 upset.
Taylor (13-10, 4-7 CL) will look to bring the momentum back to Paul Patterson Court with the hopes of snapping a three-game losing skid inside Odle Arena, when it hosts Marian (16-7, 6-5 CL) on Saturday at 3:00 pm. The Trojans will also be looking to avenge a 73-71 loss to MU in a tightly contested affair in Indianapolis on January 6.