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Juniata Men Fall To Lebanon Valley In Basketball Finale

(Posted February 19, 2005)

Nick Hager scored a team-high 12 points and also grabbed five rebounds in the team\'s season-finale at Lebanon Valley.

Lebanon Valley 62, Juniata 47

Annville, Pa. ? After putting together one of its finest defensive efforts of the season this past Wednesday, the Juniata College men?s basketball team had the tables turned as the Eagles matched a season-low with 47 points and fell to Lebanon Valley 62-47 in Annville Saturday afternoon. Juniata finishes the season with a record of 9-16 overall and 4-10 in the Commonwealth Conference. The Flying Dutchmen are now 18-5 overall and finish 10-4 in conference action.

With the win, the Flying Dutchmen clinched the number-two seed for the Commonwealth Conference postseason, which will begin on Wednesday.

Both teams struggled shooting the ball in the first half as the teams combined for 46 first-half points with just 14 field goals. The Eagles scored the first five points of the game getting hoops from Nick Hager (Franklin/Franklin) and Brian Cannon (Fallston/Fallston, Md.) to hold a 5-0 edge three-and-half minutes into the game. Juniata maintained the lead until a 7-0 run from Lebanon Valley moved the home team in front by four with 6:17 remaining. The Eagles then went cold from the field, as a lay-up from Cannon was Juniata?s only field goal in the final 8:30. Lebanon Valley?s Jimmy Curran hit a three with 39 seconds left in the half to send the Flying Dutchmen into the locker room leading by 10.

Juniata was just 6-of-32 from the field in the first 20 minutes, though the Flying Dutchmen hit just 8-of-24 in the first half.

The second half saw Lebanon Valley heat up from the field, while Juniata continued to struggle finding the range from the floor. Tommy McConnell (Bishop Guilfoyle/Hollidaysburg) scored the first hoop of the half to cut the lead to eight, but the home team scored the next seven points to take a 15-point edge. Juniata pulled back within 10 after a basket from Hager with 5:22 remaining, but that was as close as the Eagles would get.

Hager scored a team-high 12 points for Juniata and also grabbed five rebounds. Travis Boyd (Juniata Valley/Barree) added 11 for the Eagles, while Neil Holloway (Tussey Mountain/Saxton) finished with a team-high seven rebounds.

Jimmy Curran came off the bench to score a game-high 14 points. J.D. Byers notched 11 points and five assists for Lebanon Valley, while Brad Stigelman chipped in 10. Dan Hogan led all players with 11 rebounds.

Juniata finishes the season with fewer wins than losses for the first time in three seasons, and brings back its entire roster next season.

JUNIATA (47): Holloway 0 1-6 1, Cannon 2 1-2 5, Jasiota 0 2-2 2, McConnell1 2-2 4, Hager 5 0-0 12, Byer 1 1-2 3, Ferko 1 0-0 2, Opitz 2 0-0 4, LaPrad 0 1-2 1, Chamberlain 1 0-2 2, Price 0 0-0 0, Boyd 4 2-2 11, Littleton 0 0-0 0, Holencik 0 0-0 0, Bull 0 0-0 0. Totals ? 17 10-20 47

LEBANON VALLEY (62): Buzinski 2 3-4 7, Stigelman 2 6-6 10, Witmeyer 0 0-0 0, Polinsky 1 0-0 2, Byers 2 7-8 11, Curran 6 0-0 14, Wolensky 0 0-0 0, Hogan 3 3-7 9, West 0 0-0 0, Ruth 0 0-2 0, Pope 0 0-0 0, Orr 4 1-2 9, Brossman 0 0-0 0, Foster 0 0-0 0. Total ? 20 20-29 62

Halftime: Lebanon Valley 28-18. 3-point goals: Juniata 3 (Hager 2, Boyd); Lebanon Valley 2 (Curran 2). Assists: Juniata 10 (Byer 3); Lebanon Valley 13 (Byers 5). Rebounds: Juniata 37 (Holloway 7); Lebanon Valley 41 (Hogan 11).

Records: Juniata (9-16); Lebanon Valley (18-5).

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.