On Saturday afternoon, the Calvin men's basketball team welcomed Lawrence Tech (0-2) to Van Noord Arena for its second exhibition game. The Knights defeated the visiting Blue Devils 84-63.
As an NAIA institution, Lawrence Tech's regular season is already underway. Prior to their contest against the Knights, the Blue Devils had played two games, falling 71-66 to the University of Windsor and 84-79 to Grace College.
The Knights jumped out to a 10-3 lead early in the first half, but the Blue Devils would go on a seven-point run to tie the game.
The Blue Devils capitalized on a handful of free throw attempts to fuel a 7-0 run, taking a five-point lead (24-19) with 4:42 remaining in the half.
Senior Nick Kronemeyer (Hamilton, Mich./Hamilton HS) broke up the Blue Devils' momentum, completing a three-point play to cut the deficit to two points. However, Lawrence Tech forward Christian Reed knocked down a three-pointer to reclaim the five-point lead for his team.
Calvin would outscore its visitors 8-2 to close out the half, holding the Blue Devils scoreless for four minutes until Lawrence Tech's Payton DeWildt made a last-second jump shot to cut the deficit to one. The Knights would possess a 30-29 lead at the half.
The Knights scored the first four points of the second half, courtesy of buckets by junior Tony Canonie (South Haven, Mich./South Haven HS) and senior Michael Wilks (Hudsonville, Mich./Unity Christian HS), both assisted by senior Cam Denney (Bluffton, Ind./Norwell HS).
Calvin's offense began to heat up in the second half as it built an 18-point lead less than nine minutes into the half. The Blue Devils responded with six straight points, but still trailed the Knights 60-48.
With 7:34 left to play, back-to-back Calvin three-pointers by senior Nate Drews (Rochester Hills, Mich./Rochester Hills Lutheran HS) and sophomore Carlos Amoros (Wyoming, Mich./Wyoming HS), gave the Knights a 19-point advantage.
The Blue Devils were unable to recover as the Knights rolled to a 84-63 victory.
Wilks led the Knights with 17 points (8-10 FG, 1-2 3-pt), also snagging five rebounds. Drews finished with 14 points (5-8 FG, 4-6 3-pt). Sophomore Austin Bykerk (Jenison, Mich./Unity Christian HS) and Denney added 12 and 10 points, respectively. Bykerk also had five boards in the victory, while Denney led the Knights with six assists and two steals. Canonie logged five assists.
Seven of the Knights nine three-point field goals came in the second half, including three by Drews.
Calvin outrebounded Lawrence Tech 42-26.
The Knights will officially open their season next Friday when they host Finlandia University at 7:30 p.m. followed by a Saturday afternoon home tilt against Augustana College at 3 p.m.