On a day with alumni from at least four different decades in the crowd representing a wonderful past, the Hillsdale College men's basketball team rolled to its fourth win in a row thanks in part to its youngest player, showing exciting things to come for the future.
Freshman center Austen Yarian set a career-high with 19 points on 8-for-9 shooting from the field, in a 77-61 Charger win over Trevecca Nazarene at the Dawn Tibbetts Potter Arena. Hillsdale now stands at 17-4 overall and 11-3 in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference.
Yarian's confidence and role in the offense have grown bit by bit over the past couple weeks, but Saturday was a breakout game for the Cleveland native by any measure. He tied his previous career-high with 10 points in the first half, making all four of his shots from the floor and both of his 3-point attempts.
He would go on to make each of his first six shots in a row and finished the game 8-for-9 from the field. His shots came in all varieties – a dunk, a runner in the lane and his two aforementioned 3-pointers in a terrific performance. He also grabbed 5 rebounds in 19 minutes on the court.
The Chargers shot exceptionally well from the floor, hitting at a 57 percent clip as a team while holding toe Trojans to 40 percent shooting. Starting guards Nate Neveau and Stedman Lowry combined for 11 assists. The ball kept moving in the team's half-court sets, and the team got good balance in the scoring column.
Lowry drained three 3-point baskets and finished with 15 points and 5 assists. Junior center Nick Czarnowski went 5-for-7 from the field and had 11 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists, while Neveau chipped in with 9 points, 4 rebounds and 6 assists.
Trevecca's only lead of the game came when it held a 13-12 edge seven minutes into the first half. Hillsdale promptly responded with a 17-2 run that put it ahead by double digits for good. Lowry hit two 3-pointers as part of the game-changing barrage midway through the first half.