Senior guard scores career high in victory against Slippery Rock

Category:  Sports
Wednesday, February 21st, 2018 at 7:27 PM
Senior guard scores career high  in victory against Slippery Rock by Hannah McDonald
Photo: Madi Gross

With only two home basketball games remaining in the season, Mike Beck made his presence felt on the court on Wednesday. In Edinboro’s 97-87 victory against Slippery Rock University, Beck scored the same number of points, 23, as his jersey number.

The local senior’s performance, a career high, was crucial to securing the Fighting Scots’ win over the Rockets. 

The game took off with Edinboro’s Keshawn Liggins making a 3-point shot within the first 30 seconds of the game. This was almost immediately met with a score by Slippery Rock. Beck responded with a 3-point basket of his own. 

Liggins and Beck played well together, with intended passes fast and sharp. Liggins scored 21 points in total during the game, but he is no stranger to higher point totals. He’s scored less than 29 points only one other time in the last five games. 

Beck, on the other hand, had not hit double digits since a game against Clarion University on Jan. 17. Three days later, in a different game against Slippery Rock, Beck went scoreless. And in the month of February, prior to this outburst, Beck had scored a total of 22 points. 

But he was at the top of his game here. After scoring with 12 minutes left in the second half, his momentum caused him to slide off the court, hitting the padded wall. Without breaking stride, though, Beck jumped back in and was down the court to assist his teammates in a matter of seconds. 

“It’s been an up and down season for me all year, especially shooting the ball,” Beck said in an interview a couple days after the game. “I had a stretch in the middle of the season where I was really starting to doubt myself and doubt my shot. But my teammates and my coaches told me to keep shooting and having a game like that just restores your confidence.” 

Beck said confidence was a major component in his strong play.

“I don’t think I did anything different. I just made shots that game,” he said. “Like I said earlier, I was struggling with my shot, but it’s nice once you see it go in a couple times. After I saw the ball go in, I started to get a rhythm and from there started to score more.”

Head Men’s Basketball Coach Pat Cleary said he was happy to see the team working together and having players like Beck step up and perform well.

“We loved it. We talked about how this is the time of year where we need to start doing stuff for one another,” he said. “We need to play for each other; we need to make sure that everybody’s helping out. And the guys really stepped up and accomplished that.”

Beck — along with other seniors Mason, Liggins and Maceo Baston II — are looking to have a strong finish to their final season. 

“Our team is confident going into it (the end of season and the playoffs). I know individually I’m way more confident as well with my shot and I’m just looking to score more from that game,” Beck said. “We’re pretty excited for the road ahead.”

Hannah McDonald can be reached at sports.spectator@gmail.com.

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