Men’s Basketball Downs Aquinas 61-44 in First Round of Hall of Fame Classic
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Calvin opened play at the 15th annual Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame Classic with a 61-44 victory over host Aquinas and snapped a five-game losing streak against the Saints in the process. The Knights will face Cornerstone in Saturday’s championship game at 8 p.m. at the Aquinas College Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center.
Calvin (2-2) limited Aquinas to 22.2 percent field goal shooting in the first half, en route to taking a 33-17 halftime lead. The Knights were able to stretch the lead to 24 points with 9:25 left in the second half only to see Aquinas (3-5) rally to within 12 points with five minutes left to play.
Aquinas would get no closer the rest of the way however as the Knights pulled away down the stretch.
“I thought our defense, particularly in the first half was really good,” said Calvin men’s basketball coach Kevin Vande Streek. “I thought our offense fed off our defensive intensity and really jump-started our team.”
Calvin was led in scoring by senior Brad Schyders (Unity Christian HS) and sophomore Tom Snikkers (Unity christian HS) with 11 points apiece while freshman Jordan Brink (Dyer, IN/Illiana Christian HS) had 10 points, five rebounds, two assists and two steals. Senior Brent Schuster (Denver, CO/Denver Christian HS) and sophomore Bryan Powell (Wyoming Park HS) added eight poitns apiece with Schuster blocking a pair of shots. Freshman Tyler Kruis (Calvin Christian HS) also hauled down a career-high eight rebounds in the win.
Calvin was 15 of 19 at the free throw line (.789) and shot 41.2 percent from the field.
“We have great respect for Aquinas and its men’s basketball program,” said Vande Streek. “They’ve had our number the past few years so it feels good to get a win against a quality program.”
Calvin will now turn its attention to a Cornerstone team that defeated Hope 85-76 in Friday’s opening first round game. The Golden Eagles will enter the game ranked fourth in the most recent NAIA Division II poll and will carry a 7-0 record into Saturday’s title tilt.
“Cornerstone is very good and we’ll have our hands full,” said Vande Streek. “They are not only very talented but also very experience. We’ll have to be at the top of our game to have a chance to win but we are also looking forward to the challenge.”