Sun, Jan. 17, 2010 - [Men's Basketball]
There is no doubt that three point field goals were a key factor in the Loras College men's basketball team building a 15 point lead early in the second half in the AWC Saturday. The Duhawks were 9-of-22 from long distance on Saturday evening and often times made their three's in bunches, including their first four field goals of the second half. They held the lead for 19:56 of the final 20:00, and in the end, it was the fifth made three pointer by the visiting Rams was the one that everyone will remember from the first game of 2010 in the Athletic and Wellness Center.
Reserve guard Marc Neef's three point field goal with 4.1 seconds remaining proved to be the difference in a game which at different points seemed as if it would hand Cornell their second straight IIAC loss and pull the Duhawks even with the Rams at 4-2 in league play. But Neef and the Rams took what the Duhawks gave them down the stretch, including Neef's final field goal from the right wing. J. Ryan Lott dribbled into the heart of the Loras defense and dished a back-to-the-basket pass out to Neef, who buried the shot in front of the Cornell bench. With no timeouts remaining, the Duhawks turned to Connor Mooney for the game's final 4.1 seconds, but Mooney was only able to manage an awkward look from 25 feet away that never threatened to go down, allowing the Rams to huddle around Neef and quickly celebrate on the AWC floor.
Loras shot 44% from the field, 41% from long distance, but just 57% from the free throw line. Four starters, Connor Mooney, Jordan Harrelson, Mike Gleason, and Tim Kelly reached double figures. Gleason took ten shots, all from behind the arc, and made five for his game high 15 points. Mooney added seven assists, and Kelly added six rebounds. Jordan Harrelson even added a dunk from the right baseline that brought the crowd to their feet.
But the Rams used Loras' six missed free throws, their 17 offensive rebounds, and 16 second chance points, and a solid full court press to hang around. They also took advantage of a combined 14 fouls on big men Dan Pawelski, Alex Brant, and Jason Abbuhl, making more free throws, 19, than the Duhawks attempted, 14. Cornell had four players in double figures, Chris Handke and Joe Newcomb had 14 and Matt Lewis and J. Ryan Lott had 12 apiece. Lewis, Newcomb, and Handke each had a double-double, and pulled down 14 of the Cornell 17 offensive rebounds.
Loras has just 48 hours to regroup before returning to the court on Monday night. The Iowa Conference has a full slate of games for the holiday. The Duhawks will be in Cedar Rapids on Monday night to take on the 3-13, 1-6 Kohawks. Tipoff is approximately 8:00 PM and can be heard locally on Newstalk 1490 WDBQ following the women's game. Check with the Coe College website for online viewing options.