A 23-2 run to open the second half provided all the margin the Hillsdale College men's basketball team needed Thursday night.
The Chargers broke open a close game and cruised to an 80-60 win over Ohio Valley University at the Dawn Tibbetts Potter Arena. The win, the team's second straight, makes it 10-5 overall and 6-2 in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference.
Senior guard Harrison Niego swished three 3-point field goals in the opening minutes of the second half to spark Hillsdale on its huge scoring run. The Chargers allowed the Fighting Scots just two points in the second half's first 10 minutes, helping it to open up a substantial lead.
Every player on the Hillsdlae roster played, which was a very good sign independent of the one-sided score. Senior guard Nate Neveau returned to action after missing several games due to injury. Junior guard Mike Travlos made his home debut and helped Hillsdale out big time in the first half with 5 quick points that helped it grab an early advantage.
The Chargers also saw a big edge in turnovers. At one point in the second half, Hillsdale committed just three turnovers compared to 18 for OVU. At that stage, Hillsdale held a 20-2 edge in points off turnovers.
The 3-point shots were falling for Hillsdale too, as it made 10 of its first 15 shots from beyond the arc.
Good balance highlighted the offense for the Chargers, with five players scoring between 12 and 14 points. Sophomore forward Davis Larson led the way with 14, making his last five consecutive shots from the field.
Niego scored 12, going 4-for-7 from 3-point territory, and sophomore Austen Yarian came off the bench to pick up 12 points and ateam-high 10 rebounds.
PHOTO: Todd Lancaster