By Ronald Hanaki
Senior forward Rasheed Moore and sophomore guard Kitt Najee Walls combined for 34 points, but it was not enough as ESU’s Men’s Basketball team fell to the Lock Haven University Bald Eagles 89-82 at Thomas Field House late Saturday afternoon.
Unlike the earlier meeting on Jan. 3 when ESU beat Lock Haven 115-78, this was a competitive game from the beginning.
The game was tied 26-26 with less than ten minutes to go in the first half. The Warriors outscored the Bald Eagles 27-20 to take a modest 53-46 lead at recess.
The Warriors got out to an early 57-48 lead in the second half, but the Bald Eagles were relentless. Lock Haven slowly clawed their way back into the game. With about 14 minutes left in the game, Lock Haven freshman guard Amir Hinton’s jumper tied the game 61-61.
It was a back-and-forth game after that as the two teams traded leads. Moore’s jumper gave ESU a 75-73 lead with just over five minutes to go, but that was the last time that the Warriors would hold the lead.
The Bald Eagles outscored the Warriors 16-7 for the rest of the game to close out ESU 89-82 in front of their home fans.
Lock Haven freshman guard Amir Hinton had a monster game with 26 points and 11 rebounds to power the Bald Eagles. On Monday, Hinton was named PSAC Men’s Basketball Eastern Division Freshman Athlete of the Week.
A cold shooting second half doomed the Warriors. It was a tale of two halves as ESU shot a blistering 54.4 percent from the field in the first half, but the Warriors shot just nine for 36 from the field for a dismal 25 percent shooting percentage in the second half.
In contrast, Lock Haven went 14 for 31 for a 45.2 percent shooting percentage in the second half, and that was the difference in the game.
More alarmingly, this game marked the second time in ten days that the Warriors lost a second half lead.
Nevertheless, there were some bright spots for the Warriors. Sophomore guard Chris Bing contributed 10 points and 10 rebounds for a rare double-double.
Junior guard Ryan Krawczeniuk had 13 points, and redshirt sophomore guard Jakwan Jones came off the bench to contribute four assists.
The Warriors will return to the newly renovated Koehler Fieldhouse to play the Millersville University Marauders in an Alumni Game on Saturday afternoon.
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