After a slow start, Devan Nichols found fire for the Red Hawks. First, catching a lob from Jamon Walker for a dunk and then making another five in a row to convert on his first six attempts from the field. Devan finished the half by taking a quick outlet pass from Jordan Marble and connected on another three point shot just inside of half court to send the Red Hawks to the half with a three point lead (45-42).
The Vikings stayed resilient as they started the second half with back-to-back offensive rebounds to quickly tie the score. On the night, the Vikings converted on 17 second chance points and 50 points in the paint. They also out-rebounded the Red Hawks 42 to 34 as they showed complete domination inside against the smaller Red Hawks.
Lake Michigan would not allow their struggles inside defensively to slow their offense though, and in the second half it came from a number of different options. Jordan Marble found his perimeter shooting touch, connecting on four three point shots on his way to a 16 point half. Andrew McGuirt, Jamon Walker, and Isaiah Brooks all provided scoring all over the court, as they scored nine, eight, and seven points respectively. Nichols continued with another strong half scoring nine while also contributing four assists.
As the game came to the final minutes, the Red Hawks shooting and the Vikings strength inside were in a neck and neck battle. The Red Hawks took a four-point lead to the final 40 seconds. After converting the first of two free throws, the Vikings missed a second, but were able to come up with an offensive rebound once again and scored to cut the lead to just one with 34 seconds to play. The Red Hawks were looking to hold for a late shot when the Vikings were able to knock the ball free from Nichols and forced the turnover, as the ball couldn't be controlled by the hustling Red Hawks inbounds. With just five seconds to play, the Vikings once again used their inside strength to finish at the rim to take the one point advantage. In a last ditch effort, Nichols sped up the sideline, but came to close and stepped out of bounds, giving the ball back to the Vikings for the win.
The Red Hawks dropped to 0-2 in the conference despite a hard fought effort. Devan Nichols led the effort with 33 points on 13-18 shooting, nine rebounds, and four assists. Jordan Marble added 22 points and eight rebounds. Andrew McGuirt added 15 points, five rebounds, and five assists. Jamon Walker scored 13 points, assisted on four baskets, and collected two steals. The Red Hawks next game is Saturday January 11, 2020 at 3:00 pm as they travel to Mount Pleasant to face Mid-Michigan Community College.