RedStorm men drop Goshen for first win

By Randy Payton - For Ohio Valley Publishing

RIO GRANDE, Ohio — “Hey Mickey you’re so fine, you’re so fine you blow my mind, hey Mickey.”

That line was the catchy phrase from one-hit wonder Toni Basil’s No. 1 hit “Mickey” nearly 40 years ago.

For the University of Rio Grande men’s basketball team and it’s first-year head coach Ryan Arrowood, Saturday afternoon provided that same sentiment – albeit from someone with a slightly different spelling.

Miroslav “Miki” Tadic poured in a game-high 33 points in his debut for the RedStorm, fueling an 87-78 triumph over Goshen College in the finale of the Domino’s Classic at the Newt Oliver Arena.

Rio Grande evened its record at 1-1, with Arrowood earning the first victory of his collegiate coaching career.

Goshen, which knocked off Ohio Christian University in Friday night’s opener to the Classic, dropped to 2-3 with the loss.

Tadic, a sophomore from Hilversum, The Netherlands, finished 11-of-16 from the floor overall while connecting on six of 10 three-point attempts in just over 32 minutes of playing time.

He scored 18 of his points in the opening half as Rio Grande built an eight-point lead before eventually settling on a 46-43 halftime advantage.

The Maple Leafs, as they did in Friday’s win over OCU, continued to chip away at the deficit after the intermission and eventually opened up a four-point lead of their own, 53-49, following a jumper by Austin Branagan with 15:30 left to play in the contest.

The game remained a see-saw affair over the next seven minutes, with another bucket by Branagan forging the 12th – and final – tie of the day, 65-65, with 8:21 remaining.

Rio responded with an 11-1 run – including seven points by Tadic – to open up a 10-point advantage just three minutes later, but a 10-2 spurt by Goshen pulled the Maple Leafs within 78-76 following a three-point goal by Tahj Curry with 2:33 left to play.

The RedStorm nailed down the win, though, by scoring nine of the game’s final 11 points. Junior Kam Harris (Amelia, VA) netted four of his career-high 16 points during the run.

In addition to the offensive performances by Tadic and Harris, Rio Grande also got a solid all-around performance from sophomore Shiloah Blevins (South Webster, OH) who had a career-high 20 points and six assists to go along with eight rebounds, four blocked shots and three steals. The blocked shots and steals totals tied single-game career-high marks for Blevins.

Freshman Andrew Shull (Milton, WV) added 15 points and senior Bryanth Farr (Beloit, WI) pulled down a game-high nine rebounds for the RedStorm, who shot 55.4 percent from the floor (31-for-56) while out rebounding their guests, 32-23.

Michael Bowers, who had a career-high 23 points in Friday night’s win over Ohio Christian, led Goshen with a new career-best 28 points – 20 of which came in the first half. He also had three steals.

Branagan finished with 19 points and Curry was limited to a season-low 10 points for the Maple Leafs, who shot 52 percent (25-for-48).

Phillip Hughes led Goshen with seven rebounds.

Rio Grande is scheduled to return to action on Tuesday night when it travels to 12th-ranked Marian (IN) University.

By Randy Payton

For Ohio Valley Publishing

Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.

Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.