Saturday, January 13, 2018

Huskies Men's Basketball's Run Comes To Screeching Halt Saturday At East Stroudsburg

EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. - Coming into Saturday's contest, the Bloomsburg University men's basketball team had scored at least 90 points in four consecutive games, setting a program-record for the longest streak of reaching that mark. However, that offensive outburst came to a screeching halt on Saturday afternoon as East Stroudsburg University shut down the Huskies' offense en route to a 98-62 victory at the Koehler Fieldhouse. It was a season-low in points for the Huskies, who dropped to 9-6 overall and 5-6 in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Eastern Division. The Warriors improved to 11-3 overall and 8-2 in league play.

Senior Kyle-Michael Rose (Middletown, Del./Sanford School) posted his second double-double of the season with 16 points and 11 rebounds while adding four blocked shots. He moved into third place on the school's all-time blocked shot list with 111 career swats. Redshirt senior Christian Mortellite (Hammonton, N.J./Hammonton) needed a late burst to get into double figures as he finished the afternoon with 11 points and now needs 97 points to become the school's all-time leading scorer. Freshman Ethan Houston (Carlisle, Pa./Carlisle) had a strong game off of the Huskies' bench as he chipped in with eight points and six rebounds.

East Stroudsburg set the tone of the game early as it raced out to a 17-2 lead in the first seven minutes and never looked back. The Huskies battled back to pull within seven, 28-21, with 3:10 left in the opening half after a three-pointer from Houston, but the Warriors scored six of the final eight points of the half to take a 34-23 advantage into the break.

The Warriors carried the momentum into the second half as they started on an 18-4 run to take a 52-27 lead with 14:30 left and to end any thoughts of a Bloomsburg comeback. The Huskies never got closer than 21 points the rest of the way as East Stroudsburg pulled away for the 36-point victory.

Bloomsburg shot just 21-of-63 (33.3%) and tied a season-low with four three-pointers in 17 attempts (23.5%). The Huskies did make 16-of-17 at the foul line (94.1%). Meanwhile, East Stroudsburg attempted 28 more shots than Bloomsburg and finished 40-of-91 from the field (44.0%). The Warriors added 10 three-pointers in 31 tries (32.3%) but made only 8-of-18 from the line (44.4%).

The difference in the game was rebounding and turnovers. Entering the contest, the Huskies came in averaging 12.3 turnovers per game (third-fewest in the PSAC) but turned the ball over a season-high 24 times against a Warrior defense that came in leading the PSAC in forcing opponent miscues. The 24 turnovers led to 33 East Stroudsburg points. Meanwhile, the Warriors out-rebounded the Huskies, 57-42, for the contest. East Stroudsburg had 25 offensive rebounds which led to 29 second-chance points. The Huskies mustered only 10 offensive boards which gave them 13 second-chance points.

East Stroudsburg had five double-digit scorers, led by Josh Williams who scored 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds in just 15 minutes off the bench. Nick Giordano added 14 points while Steve Harris had 11 points and 14 rebounds.

Bloomsburg will look to bounce back when it heads to Seton Hill University for a matchup with the Griffins on Wednesday, January 17. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. It marks the final PSAC crossover game of the season for the Huskies.

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