Finlandia Men hangs on for road win over Martin Luther

Published: Nov. 19, 2022 at 10:39 PM EST
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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - It was a nail bitter as the Finlandia University men’s basketball team (2-3) beat Martin Luther (0-5) 94-91, Saturday afternoon at LSC Gymnasium.  It was the first win over MLC since Feb. 10, 2017.

Martin Luther came out strong and led 16-8 at the 14:04 mark.  Finlandia came back with a 15-7 run.  Junior Danny Zuchak hit a layup to tie the game at 23-23 with 9:48 to go.

The Lions pushed the lead to 37-28 at the 5:01 mark.  The Knights came back closing on a 16-5 burst to lead 44-42 at the break.

In the second half, FinnU got up by nine or more points several times; only to see Martin Luther charge back.  Junior Ilrick Higgins-Moise slammed the ball home to put Finlandia up 89-78 with 2:07 left.

Once again, the Knights refused to quit and scored with three seconds left to make it 92-91.  MLC fouled freshman John Schutz and he hit both free throws to seal the win.

Defense was a huge key for FinnU.  They pulled down 27 defensive rebounds to just 10 offensive for the Knights.  The Lions forced 27 turnovers and scored 36 points off of them.

For Finlandia, Zuchak had 23 points, three steals and shot 7-of-11 from the floor while Higgins-Moise had 10 points, nine rebounds and four steals.  Off the bench, junior Manuel Mata had 16 points with four triples and Schutz scored 11 points with three treys.

For Martin Luther, Micah Kieselhorst had 24 points, nine rebounds and blocked four shots while Seth Veers scored 22 points.

Finlandia ventures to Wisconsin, Wednesday, Nov. 23 playing UW-River Falls.  The game is scheduled to start at 6:00 p.m. CST