NEWBERRY, S.C. – The visiting Crusaders of North Greenville College utilized an opening 16-4 run to vanquish the Newberry Indians 81-66 in men’s basketball action Thursday evening. Newberry, the losers of four straight, drops to 4-7 on the season, while North Greenville improves to 3-10.
To say the least, it was an impressive offensive performance in every aspect for North Greenville. The Crusaders outscored Newberry 44-26 in the paint, hit 8 of 19 three-pointers, and shot a phenomenal 54.2% (32-59) from the floor. North Greenville also had five players reach double figures against the home team Indians.
Newberry shot a respectable 38% (24-for-62) from the field, but hit only 6-of-25 three-point shots, a usual focal point of their offensive strategy. It was Newberry’s first time back in action after the holiday break. Their previous game had been December 22nd at Furman University.
The score could have been a lot worse for the Indians, if it hadn’t been for the return of leading scorer Michael Dease (Bennettsville, S.C.), back from a two-game absence while nursing an injury. Dease led all scorers with a game high 22 points on the night, with six trifectas included in his totals. Tymere Zimmerman (Bennettsville, S.C.) was the only other Indian in double figures with ten points. He also collected a team-high seven rebounds.
North Greenville built a lead as large as 13 points in the first half, but Newberry was able to whittle that down to as little as five as they headed towards intermission. North Greenville, who entered halftime with an eight point advantage, but pulled away in the final half on the formidable inside-outside punch of guard P.J. Schumacher (Waynesburg, Penn.) and forward Daniel Morbitzer (Lexington, S.C.). Schumacher finished with 12 points, all coming from beyond the arch. Morbitzer went 6-for-7 from the floor, doing all his damage no farther than three feet from the basket. Victor Duck (Taylors, S.C.) was North Greenville’s leading scorer with 15 on the night.
Newberry doesn’t have a lot of time to think about the loss, as South Atlantic Conference play begins Saturday as the Carson-Newman College Eagles come calling at Eleazer Arena for a 4 p.m. tipoff. Last year these two teams split the season series, with both teams defending their homecourt.