WEBSTER GROVES, Mo. - The Hanover men's basketball team, led by junior Isaac Hibbard (New Albany, Ind.), defeated Webster on Saturday afternoon to remain perfect on the season, 65-58.
The Panthers (4-0 overall) saw three players finish in double digits on day two of the Webster Classic with Hibbard pacing the field netting a game-high 17 points with eight rebounds. Joining him were teammates senior Blake Robertson (Greenfield, Ind.) and junior Connor Washburn (Fishers, Ind.) with 16 and 12 points respectively. As a team, the Blue and Red connected for a game best eight three-pointers as Robertson netted four total.
After a sluggish start, the Panthers came alive using a 5-0 run led by senior Kevin Williams (Edinburgh, Ind.) and Robertson to take the Panthers first lead of the contest at the 15:36 mark, 10-9. The back and forth battle continued for several minutes before a Robertson deep ball and another Kevin Williams layup gave HC the slight advantage, 25-20.
With just under five minutes to play before the break, Webster looked to rally pulling within two before back-to-back jumpers by junior Mark Albers (Pendleton, Ind.) and senior Logan Ratts (Martinsville, Ind.) extended the Panther lead, 29-25. Ratts deemed clutch in the final seconds of the half sinking a three-pointer to put Hanover on top 34-27 at the break.
The Blue and Red opened the second half with a 7-0 run getting contributions from all starting five to push the difference to 41-27. However, WU responded with a series of buckets to continue to nip at the HC 44-37 lead. But Hibbard would slam the door on the Webster come back as he hit a momentum shifting three-pointer with 11:00 minutes remaining. Minutes later Washburn got a layup that more then sealed the deal for Hanover as they pushed the advantage back to double digits before a pair of clutch free throws in the final seconds propelled HC to victory.
The Panthers return to action on Wednesday, December 4 as they open Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action at Collier Arena with Franklin. Tip-off is set for 7:30 PM.