The starting five on the Lawrence University men’s basketball team was on fire Friday night.
The Vikings’ starters shot 63.2 percent (36-57) from the floor as Lawrence posted a 100-79 Midwest Conference victory over Illinois College at Alexander Gymnasium.
Jon Mays led the assault for Lawrence (1-2, 1-0 MWC) with a career-high 26 points. Mays was 11 of 18 from the floor. Tyler Crisman added 22 points on 7 of 14 shooting from the field, and Chris Siebert added 21 points and was 8 of 11 from the floor.
Conor Klusendorf was 6 of 7 from the floor on his way to 12 points, and Erik Borresen was 4 of 7 from the field and finished with 10 points. Klusendorf also picked up a career-high five blocked shots.
Nathan Kohler led Illinois College (2-1, 0-1) with 15 points.
Lawrence, which shot 59.7 percent from the floor for the game, broke the game open midway through the first half. The Vikings led 15-9 and then went on a 23-5 run to grab a 38-14 advantage with 8:41 left in the opening half.
Illinois College battled back and trimmed the margin to 42-32 with 3:45 left before the break. The Vikings then finished the half on a 10-5 run, punctuated by Andrew Kline’s jumper with 47 seconds left, to take a 52-37 lead at the half.
Lawrence’s lead was as little as 10 points at 65-55 with 12:04 remaining, but the Vikings never let the lead shrink to single figures. Lawrence built the advantage back to 16 points with 5:56 left and never led by less than 13 points the rest of the way.