Men's Basketball

Transy men start fast, then hold off Anderson at the line

The bottom line on Transylvania's 82-67 win over Anderson came at the Beck Center three-point line.

And the free-throw line.

Transy (4-0), in its Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference season opener Saturday, scored its first 21 points on three-pointers, then locked up the win by scoring its final 15 points at the foul line.

"We got off to a real good start," said Tate Cox, who fueled Transy's start with four consecutive three-pointers en route to a career-high 26 points. "Got hot early and it just had an effect on everybody else, too. Everybody started shooting the ball real well.

"We got a big lead. We let them come back, but we were able to keep our composure and finish out the game."

The Pioneers, who saw an 18-point lead shrink to three, finished 14-for-33 from the three-point line. Cox, a 6-1 sophomore, went 5-for-8, and Barrett Meyer was 4-for-11.

At the free-throw line, Cox went 7-for-7 and Chris Owens 6-for-6 to lead a 20-for-22 team effort.

Meyer finished with 16 points, Owens with 14. Ethan Spurlin added 12 points, 12 rebounds and six assists, while Brandon Rash had eight points, four boards and five assists.

Transy finished with nearly twice as many assists (15) as turnovers (8).

Transy's balance helped offset a 40-point game by the Ravens' 6-foot-1 junior Phil Hogan, who shot 8-for-13 from three-point range. Brock Morrison added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Anderson (4-4, 1-1).

Spurlin and Rash came in as the top two scorers in the HCAC, averaging 23 and 19.3 points.

"We knew there would eventually be a team that would try to really take that away, and I've been telling these guys for a week-and-a-half, two weeks, that's eventually going to open some other things," Coach Brian Lane said. "We were able to get some open looks and really good shots early. (Cox) got us off to a great start, the kind of start that we really needed."

Owens got the three-for-all started as Transy led wire-to-wire.

Working against a 2-3 zone, Cox hit four straight bull's-eyes for a 15-4 lead.

Meyer hit next, then Owens for a 21-10 bulge.

The Pioneers led 46-28 when Meyer stole the ball and laid it in with 3:02 left in the half.

Anderson rallied to within 62-59 with 5:18 left, when Morrison scored on the block.

"Give our guys credit. We were in a pretty big hole and we just kept saying to stay with our game plan," said Tom Slyder, coach of the Ravens. "We felt pretty certain Transylvania was going to come out loaded for bear. We'd beaten them the last two times down here and won three of the last four. They're a really good basketball team. We know that, and today they just protected home court."

Ashley Hatfield, who had Transy's only bench points (6), bagged a three-pointer for a 65-59 lead.

After an Anderson turnover, Spurlin scored on a put-back.

Then the Pioneers scored their final 15 at the foul stripe.