SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – In their second exhibition game of the 2017-18 season, the Lake Superior State men's basketball team took on Indiana Tech of the NAIA's Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC). The Lakers overcame the hot start of the Warriors to win 78-67.
The Warriors came out strong against Lake Superior, as they jumped out to a 25-9 before 8:00 had ticked off of the clock. Indiana Tech took advantage of several missed shots by the Lakers, establishing a 16 point lead.
A layup by senior center Mike Nicholson helped give the Lakers a spark, as their defense began to smother the Indiana Tech offense. Lake Superior's offense managed to get going, as Akaemji Williams, Nicholson and Carson Manger helped close the gap. Despite Lake Superior clamping down, however, Indiana Tech ended the half with a 3 point lead over the Lakers.
Coming out of halftime, the Lakers closed the deficit to one on a dunk by Nicholson from Williams. A three pointer by Blake Marquardt gave Lake Superior its first lead of the game at 36-34.
The game evolved into a back-and-forth affair, as the lead either changed hands or the score was tied 11 times over a six minute stretch.
A tip-in from freshman Rog Stein gave the Lakers a 50-49 lead – a lead which they did not relinquish. Baskets by Malek Adams, Nicholson and Brandon Allen enabled Lake Superior to open up a nine point lead.
Indiana Tech began to close the lead on the strength of four free throws, but the Laker defense took control, limiting the Warriors to 13 points in the final 9:10 of the game.
The Laker offense, meanwhile, kept their foot on the accelerator and widened the point gap to put the game away with a 78-67 final score.
Nicholson led Lake State with 19 points and 9 rebounds. Williams was right behind the 6'9" center with 18 points and 6 boards, plus 7 assists and 3 steals.
Indiana Tech was led statistically by Edmond Early, Jr., who had 19 points. Nic Williams led with 9 rebounds, while Max Huber put up 7 assists. The Warriors went 11 for 15 at the charity stripe.
During halftime, AlexiAnn Drouin of the women's tennis team was acknowledged for her stellar season which saw her named GLIAC Women's Player of the Year. Drouin, a freshman from St. Georges, Quebec, is the first Laker to ever be so named.
Lake Superior kicks off the regular season against Kentucky Weslayen in the G-MAC/GLIAC Battler Classic. Held in Detroit, the Lakers take on the Panthers on Saturday, November 11th at 6 p.m. The next day, Lake Superior faces Alderson Broaddus at 1 p.m.