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Huntington wraps up regular season with 88-78 win over MVNU

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MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – Senior Daniel Woll and junior Mike Bush teamed up to account for over half of their team’s offense Saturday afternoon in the HU men’s basketball team’s 88-78 win over Mount Vernon Nazarene University (19-11, 8-10) at Ariel Arena. The win wraps up Huntington’s regular season as they improve to 16-14 overall, 7-11 in league play.

The W secures the 7th spot in the final Crossroads League standings. The Foresters will travel to 2nd-seeded Indiana Wesleyan Wednesday evening for a 7:00 p.m. tip-off with the Wildcats in first round action of the league tournament.

Woll poured in 27 points on 13-for-16 shooting to top all scorers. It’s the seventh time this season he’s scored at least 20 points. Bush finished with 18 points and handed out a game-best ten dimes for his league-leading 17th double double. The 5-7 floor general was just two boards shy of a triple double as he finished with a game-best eight rebounds.

Mason Coverstone rounded out HU’s double digit scoring with 14 points. The trio combined to go 28-for-39 from the field to pace the Foresters to one of their best shooting performances of the year at 64.4 percent (38-for-59).

While Coach Platt’s squad sizzled the nets at one end of the floor, they did any equally impressive job defensively at the other end to limit the Cougars to just 42.4 percent shooting on the afternoon (28-for-66). The disparity made for a day in which the visitors only trailed one possession early in the first half.

Huntington opened up a ten-point lead of 22-12 by the 13:26 mark and never let their hosts get closer than six points the rest of the frame before heading into intermission with a comfortable 49-38 advantage behind Woll’s 16 points.

HU came out of the locker room to take their largest cushion of the day up to that point at 55-40 but a gritty MVNU crew spent six minutes methodically chipping  away at the lead to slice it to four at 61-57 with just over 12 minutes remaining.

While HU managed just six points over that six minutes, Woll and Bush made sure that didn’t happen again as they accounted for HU’s next 13 points to build the lead back to double digits at 74-64 by the 7:40 mark.

Devon Merder gave his team its largest lead of the afternoon when he connected on his second long ball of the contest for an 82-66 lead with five minute to go. It was smooth sailing for HU after that as they held their hosts at arm’s length the rest of the way for the double digit win.

Deontae Cole finished with 24 points to lead MVNU. Joey Schmitz came off the bench to add 19 points while Josh Ashwill tossed in ten.

Today’s win completes the series sweep over Mount Vernon as the Foresters enjoyed a 95-85 decision back on January 21. Coach Platt has compiled a 10-2 record over the Cougars since taking since taking over the reins in 2008.

The Huntington University Foresters compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. In the past decade, Huntington has produced 38 NAIA All-America honors and 254 All-America Scholar Athlete honors. Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S. News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest.