The Transylvania men's basketball team put on an offensive clinic en route to defeating the No. 5 ranked Hanover College Panthers 95-81 on Wednesday night at the Beck Center.
With the win, Transylvania moves to 5-0 on the season, and 2-0 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play, while the Panthers dropped to 5-2 overall, and 1-1 in HCAC action.
Wednesday's win marks the first time in over a decade the Pioneers have begun a season with five consecutive wins.
Transylvania was led in scoring by junior forward Kyle Gullett who had a game-high 17 points and two rebounds in 19 minutes of play.
Junior guard Cooper Theobald turned in a complete performance for the Pioneers by scoring 16 points, grabbing six rebounds, adding two assists and two steals in the victory.
Also scoring in double figures for the Pioneers were sophomore guard Gabe Schmitt with 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field, and freshman guard Michael Jefferson with 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the field.
The Pioneers got off to a quick start as Jefferson scored seven straight points to give Transylvania a 7-3 lead just 90 seconds into the game. Using inside plays and a free throw procession, the Panthers clawed back into the game to trail 11-9 versus Transy.
Leading 24-22 with 8:57 left in the half, the Crimson spread its wings on a 10-0 run, keyed by two 3-pointers from Gullett.
However, the Panthers went on a run of their own, outscoring Transylvania 11-2 over the next two minutes to cut Transylvania's lead back to 36-34.
The Pioneers responded by scoring 10 straight points in the final three minutes, pushing their halftime lead to 46-34 over the Panthers.
The second half of the game became encumbered with the sounds of whistles as a combined 34 fouls were called on the two teams in the final period.
Transylvania continued to add to the lead with the margin eventually swelling to 87-57 on a pair of free-throws from junior forward Bo Schuh with 6:34 remaining in the game.
With the game safely in hand, both coaches were content to empty their benches, leading to an eventual 95-81 victory for the Transylvania.
The Pioneers owned the boards throughout the game as Transylvania outrebounded Hanover 35-24.
Next up, the Pioneers will host the Rose-Hulman Fightin' Engineers on Saturday, December 9. The game will follow the women's basketball matchup between the Pioneers and Engineers at 1:00 p.m., with tip-off set for 3:00 p.m. at the Beck Center.
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