Men's hoops sweeps Landmark weekend, Curley all alone at the top
(Posted January 16, 2010)
HUNTINGDON, Pa. - Arnold "Doc" Greene has to look upward on the list of all-time wins list as a Juniata College men's basketball coach for the first time since his last season in 1961 due to a 72-66 victory over Moravian College on Saturday afternoon in the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.
Head Coach Greg Curley earned his 104th coaching victory at the helm of the Eagles, moving him past Doc Greene to sit alone at the top.
"It has been a privilege to be coaching nine years here at Juniata College. I have never won a game, although I have lost a few," Curley jokingly remarked. "But this win gives me a minute to think about all the players I coached that have helped me get to this point. The players win the game, like (Jeff) Berkey (Stoystown, Pa./Shanksville-Stoneycreek), (Ryan) Jones (Coudersport, Pa./Coudersport), and (Alex) Raymond (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Altoona) did for us tonight."
Berkey and Jones led all scorers with 22 points apiece, each shooting 7-13 from the field. Berkey hit 4-7 from beyond the three-point arc, upping his season total to 50 made three-pointers. Raymond finished with 16 points, five rebounds and six assists.
As a team, Juniata (8-8, 3-2 Landmark) hit 9-14 from downtown, hitting 4-5 when it mattered most in the second half.
The Greyhounds were in control throughout most of the first half, gaining as large a lead as seven with 7:48 remaining. But the Eagles outscored Moravian, 17-12, the rest of the half to only trail by two heading into the break.
The home team took the lead for good in the second half on a jumper by junior Bruce Knowles (Duncannon, Pa./Susquenita) from the top of the key with 15:09 left on the clock. They extended the 42-41 lead to 58-46 over the next eight minutes before Moravian (4-11, 1-4 Landmark) returned the favor.
The Greyhounds responded with a 16-5 run to cut the Eagles lead to one with 2:02 to play. Then, Berkey's fourth three of the night was the dagger, as he extended the lead to four points with 1:44 on the clock.
But it was the five foot, nine inch Raymond who clinched the victory as he slashed through the defense, went amongst the redwoods and scooped it home, drawing a foul along the way. He completed the old-fashioned three-point play from the foul line. That put the score at 71-66 before a final foul shot settled the final score.
"The two wins this weekend puts us on pace for a playoff spot," continued Curley, who was more interested in the team than his own accomplishment. "Our next challenge is to win a competitive game on the road. If we keep giving ourselves chances like we did (at Catholic University and Goucher College last weekend), we will find a way to pull one out."
But the achievement that Curley set tonight has to mean something to him, right?
"I feel the connection to the program, the history of the program. My father in-law played under Doc and I have heard stories of the kind of guy and coach he was. It's a privilege to inherit a program he once ran."
"But Doc had it harder than I do. He was a dentist as well as a coach. I wasn't as smart as he was." He goes on with a smile, "the reason I'm a coach is because I couldn't get into dentist school."
The Eagles return to the hardwood next weekend with more Landmark Conference action. They will travel to King's Point, N.Y. to take on Merchant Marine on Friday, before heading to Drew University for the nightcap on Saturday.
Our readers respond...
Contact John Wall at firstname.lastname@example.org or (814) 641-3132 for more information.