Men fall to Mercyhurst University

Category:  Sports
Wednesday, February 5th, 2020 at 7:27 PM

The Edinboro University men’s basketball team fell 93-56 to Mercyhurst on Jan. 29, dropping the Scots to 5-13 overall and 2-12 in PSAC play. 

The Scots won the opening tip and were able to jump out to a quick 2-0 lead thanks to a Turner Kurt bucket, but Mercyhurst would come out hot. The Lakers went on a 24-4 run over the next eight minutes, sinking five shots from beyond the arc in that stretch. 

“Hopefully we can find a way to come out warmer,” Head Coach Pat Cleary said after the game. 

Cold starts aren’t the norm for ‘Boro. In their previous game against Slippery Rock, the teams would trade baskets the entire first half. However, against Mercyhurst, turnovers were a huge factor in the early deficit. Edinboro gave the ball away nine times during the early run, and Mercyhurst won the overall turnover battle, 20-6.

“We need to be smart with the ball,” said guard Steven Freeman. “We need to be strong and smart and patient. We can’t allow the other team to speed us up. We just need to run our offense and play how we know we can play.”

Mercyhurst kept Edinboro at an arm’s length the rest of the way, throughout the night shots simply would not fall for the Scots. Edinboro went 19-52 from the floor, including just 1-19 from deep. 

The bright spot for the Scots was front court duo Trey Staunch and Anthony Allen. They combined for 29 points, 16 rebounds and two blocks. Clearly, with the tandem of the big men on the court, Edinboro had an advantage down low. 

“That’s what we were looking for,” Cleary said. “We’re trying to find our most effective lineups. I really liked the effort and intensity Anthony Allen played with. He’s really taking some huge strides.”

Perhaps the Staunch/Allen duo will spark something in the Scots lineup moving forward. Another solution the team seems to be looking to is the implementation of the zone defense, which was used heavily again against Mercyhurst.

“From the numbers, when we play zone, we’re able to hold our opponents to fewer opportunities,” Freeman said. “That’s why we’re looking to implement [it] more often.”

The loss brings the Scots’ losing streak to nine games. Fortunately for the team, they got a brief repose and had the weekend off. 

Edinboro was back in action Feb. 5 (after press deadline), when they took on Gannon University at McComb Fieldhouse. 

The game was part of the EUKnighted series between Edinboro and Gannon, in which proceeds go to the Soldiers and Sailors Home in Erie. There will be a Hoppy Hour taking place at the Edinboro Hotel Bar from 4-7 p.m. 

Gannon currently sits at 9-9 overall and 8-6 in the PSAC.

Sam Bohen| sports.spectator@gmail.com

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