The Goshen College men’s basketball team had to survive a late charge by Huntington University, but were able to hold on for a 85-80 victory over the visiting Foresters on Tuesday night. The Maple Leafs entered the contest in need of a win to stop a five game losing streak to conference opponents and a six game losing streak overall.
A tightly contested first half came to a close with Goshen holding a slim five point lead at 39-34 as neither team was able to really seize control of the game’s opening 20 minutes. The largest lead of the half for either team was an eight point Goshen lead with around six minutes to play.
The second half saw the Leafs grab a double-digit lead three times, but Huntington battled back each time to remain within striking distance. Despite their efforts, the Foresters ran out of time, and the Maple Leafs earned the victory with free throw shooting.
Goshen was led offensively by Xavier Newson, a senior, who scored a team-high of 21 points. Devin Heath-Granger, a junior, and Kevin Phillips, a senior, recorded 18 points apiece, with Conner Funkhouser, a junior, adding 15. Christian Grider, a junior, and Alhassan Barrie, a sophomore, chipped in nine points and four points respectively.
Heath-Granger led the team with seven assists and Phillips had a team-leading nine rebounds. Defensively, Newson and Phillips each recorded one of Goshen’s two blocks.
With the victory, Goshen’s record improves to 10-11 (3-6 in conference) on the season. The Leafs will be in action again on Saturday when they host conference opponent Marian University. The game is scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m.