SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – The Lawrence Technological (Mich.) University men's basketball team defeated Concordia (Mich.) University – Ann Arbor 79-68 on Saturday, Nov. 23 in Southfield, Mich. The Blue Devils trailed by six to end the first half, but opened the second half with a 17-3 run as they outscored Concordia 50-35 in the half, fueling their sixth win of the season.
Lawrence Tech (6-2, 2-1) opened the game down 4-0, but a Gunnar Gustafson free throw and a Carter Frantz three-pointer over the next 47 seconds tied the game at 4-4. Concordia responded, going back up four but another free throw and three pointer by Isaiah Cumberland and Alek Ivanovic respectively tied it back at 8-8. Ivanovic's ensuing layup gave Lawrence Tech their first lead of the game, 10-8, in what was a back-and-forth start of the first half.
Frantz made it a one-point game at 15-14 with another three and that sparked a 5-0 mini-run to go up 16-15 with 7:36 left in the half. The teams traded points over the final five minutes as the Cardinals went into the break, up 33-29. Frantz started the second half with his fourth three of the game to make it a one-point game 12 seconds in, 33-32. It kickstarted a 17-3 run capped by a Frantz three to give Lawrence Tech a 46-36 lead with 15:39 left in the game. Frantz capped the run with his sixth three of the game.
Concordia (3-5, 1-2) cut it back down to four at 46-41 over the next 1:21, but Brandon Beavers layup and Cumberland's ensuing free-throws extended their lead out to 50-41. Ivanovic ignited the crowd with a three to put his Blue Devils to a 12-point lead, 53-41 with 11:29 on the clock. The Cardinals would go on a 15-4 run over the next 4:30 to get within three points, 59-56.
The Blue Devils' Ivanovic hit another three to push the lead up to six at 62-56, but Concordia hit back keeping the game within three points for the next 71 seconds. Lawrence Tech would answer at 64-61 with a game sealing 15-5 run to earn their second conference win of the season. It is the first time the program has won six of its first eight games and the fastest team in LTU history to reach six wins this early in the season since the golden era of the 40's and 50's.
Frantz led the Blue Devils with 22 points on 6-for-11 shooting from beyond the arc, matching his career best he set 365 days ago, Nov. 23, 2018 against Kalamazoo (Mich.) College. Beavers finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds for his first collegiate double-double. Ivanovic added 16 points on 4-of-6 shooting from three and 6-of-9 from the field. Gustafson grabbed nine rebounds and six points while Jordan Henry had 10 points off the bench in 31 minutes of action.
Concordia was led by Greg Alexander with 14 points and six rebounds, but the Blue Devils defense held the team to 37.3 percent from the field as they forced nine turnovers for six points. Lawrence Tech shot lights out in the second half and finished shooting 48.2 percent from the field. They were outrebounded by the Cardinals, 45-43, but held the advantage in defensive rebounds 34-29.
The Blue Devils now head to Indiana Tech on Tuesday, Nov. 26 when they face the Warriors in Fort Wayne, Ind. Opening tip is set for 8 p.m.