MBB Position Preview: Panthers Return Strong Core at the Forward Position

MBB Position Preview: Panthers Return Strong Core at the Forward Position

HANOVER, Ind. – The 2019-20 men's basketball season preview continues with a look at the returning forwards and centers.

The Panthers are coming off a 2018-19 campaign that saw the program go 21-7 overall and 14-4 in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference. The Panthers won the HCAC regular season and tournament crown while advancing to their third straight NCAA Division III tournament.

Seniors Ryan Cloncs (Danvillr, Ind.) and Kevin Williams (Edinburgh, Ind.) will rely on their past experiences in hopes of leading the forwards this season. Cloncs appeared in 20 games making 10 starts for the Blue and Red. The senior took a significant step forward last season posting career-best in points (138), rebounds (77), assists (18) and steals (14). Cloncs tallied five games with ten or more points, including a 17-point outburst at conference foe Defiance. He also found himself among the leading scorers in the teams NCAA tournament game with Wheaton where he netted three, three-pointers and grabbed seven rebounds.

Kevin Williams got the nod in all 28 games last season finishing the year averaging 9.8 ppg, while shooting 45 percent from the floor. The senior tallied two double doubles including a 22-point outburst in the team's victory over Manchester on January 5. He improved in all aspects of his game registering career-highs in nearly every notable category.

Joining the duo are returners junior Jackson McHugh (Indianapolis, Ind.), junior Jordan Armstrong (Shelbyville, Ky.), sophomore Carlos Garcia (Mason, Ohio), and sophomore Christian Stewart (Clarksville, Ind.). Garcia will look to crack the top five after appearing in 22 games a season ago. During his freshman campaign, he averaged 3.5 points per game, turning in two double digit performances. His success was also felt in the paint as he grabbed 50 rebounds, averaging 2.3 per contest.

After seeing action in 11 games, Stewart attempts to take on a much larger role. The sophomore averaged 3.3 minutes per game while shooting 50 percent from the floor.

In the paint, junior Connor Washburn (Fishers, Ind.) returns as a driving force for the Blue and Red. The junior did his damage down low turning in new personal best in blocks (4), rebounds (24), and points (48).

To go along with its returners, Hanover will have a few newcomers that will also look to make an impact right away.

Hanover opens the 2019-20 campaign on Tuesday, November 12 at Spalding. Tip-off is set for 7:00 PM.