Rewarding Maple Leaf support during remaining season

Rewarding Maple Leaf support during remaining season

Errick McCollum catches some air in the Leafs  contest against Huntington, Tuesday. Photo by Lindsey Beck.

Errick McCollum catches some air in the Leafs contest against Huntington, Tuesday. Photo by Lindsey Beck.

First round of cash prize give-a-way

With the basketball season coming to a close, the athletic department has developed a new game plan to increase support from Goshen College students.

“We are giving away cash at halftime to generate more interest,” said Tim Demant, Goshen College athletic director. “We don’t have a large student following, so maybe we can entice them with cash.”

Students are encouraged to enter their names in a ballot box at the ticket table for a 1-in-15 chance at winning a large sum of cash generated from gate revenues.  Three names will be drawn at each of the five remaining home games during halftime for a $10 prize. On February 21, the 15 winners will be pooled together, and one lucky winner will have a chance to win the grand prize of $300.

“The person who’s name will be drawn,” said Demant, “will win the $300 if they make a basket from anywhere on the court.”

Tessa Horst, a senior; Jeff Gouker, a sophomore; and Laura Printz, a junior, won the first raffle drawing during the women’s home game last Saturday as the Maple Leafs went head to head with the St. Francis Cougars.

With the return of Rachel Allen, and the outstanding performance of Heather Hahn and Cassie Greives, who together accumulated 52 points, it appeared the Leafs were destined for a win.

“[Allen] missed two games,” said Maple Leafs Coach Steve Wiktorowski, “and is still not 100 percent, but is improving and the display of talent by Hahn and Grieves was one of the best performances by a pair of players since I have been here.”

Despite the favoring odds, the Leafs could not keep up with St. Francis during the second half. With 5:37 left on the clock and the Leafs behind 77-53, a buzzer sounded through the Recreation-Fitness Center. However, the buzzer did not signify the end of the game but rather the need for a building evacuation.

“Someone pulled the fire alarm,” said Josh Gleason, Goshen College sports information director.

“It didn’t really have an impact on the outcome of the game,” said Coach Wiktorowski, “as it happened late when the game was pretty much already decided.”

With several turnovers in the last minutes of the game, the Leafs fell to the Cougars with a final score of 86-59 bringing their Mid-Central College Conference record to 1-11 and 6-20 overall.

Second round of cash prize give-a-way

The Goshen College cash prize give-a-way continued last Monday with $10 recipients Tahnee Delp, a first-year; Tyler Falk, senior; and Aaron Shenk, sophomore, being added to the $300 grand prize pool during the men’s basketball game against Huntington University.

Coming off of a high scoring win (101-95) against Bethel College, who is currently ranked first in the NAIA, the Huntington Foresters were sure to put Goshen College to the test. Putting constant pressure on Errick McCollum, last week’s national player of the week, Huntington took home a win with a final score of 80-76.

“When you’re on the road,” said Huntington’s head coach Ty Platt, “it’s tough as nails to win. GC is a quality team who has beaten Grace College twice. They have McCollum, who is the best on the team if not the NAIA. Going into the game against Goshen, we knew we had to dog [McCollum] as much as we possible. We thought we  contested him the majority of the time, but he was still able to score.”

McCollum was not the only Maple Leaf who felt the aggression of the game. Forward Nate West, a junior, was briefly taken out of the game with 5:59 left on the clock.

“I jumped to get a rebound,” said West, “and someone took my legs out, and I fell straight on my hip.”

Despite being slightly bruised, West came back into the game in less than a minute.

“I was just thinking about what I needed to do to help my team get a victory,” said West.

Adding to the Maple Leaf’s frustration, Bryce Bow, a senior, made a valiant attempt at a 3-pointer that could have taken the game into overtime.

“No game is ever decided on one play,” said Bow, “but I had a three to tie the game and missed it.”

“This was a huge game,” said Leafs Coach Gary Chupp, “because we were tied with Huntington in the standings. The guys showed a lot of heart in the second half coming back from 18 down to cut it to two. And we had several chances to tie or take the lead, but we couldn’t get over the hump. We simply have to give that kind of effort for 40 minutes.”

The Maple Leafs will continue to prepare for the upcoming M.C.C. tournament as they host Taylor University on Saturday at 3.p.m. to battle for their sixth conference win of the season.

Brandon Long
Written by Brandon Long

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