(Posted January 21, 2011)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Juniata College men's basketball went on a bit of a roller coaster ride trying to chase the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy. The Eagles only led the game once off the tip-off and fell to the Landmark Conference opponent, 65-58, Friday night in Kennedy + Sports and Recreation Center.

The start of the first half was a bit bumpy for the Eagles. Alex Raymond (Hollidaysburg, Pa./Hollidaysburg) scored first to gain the Eagles one and only lead of the game just a minute and a half in. His layup was followed by four missed shots and two turnovers by Juniata.

With ten left in the first half the game was tied up, 13-13, and the teams went neck-and-neck until the Eagles were held at 17 points and the Mariners went on a 12-point run. Dan Sekulski (Douglassville, Pa./Daniel Boone Area) was the player to finally break the dry spell with a layup and Austin Ankney (Somerset, Pa./Somerset) grabbed back-to-back baskets bringing the score to 21-28 with less than two minutes left. The score was 25-32 at the halfway mark.

Juniata (10-7, 3-3 Landmark) struggled to catch Merchant Marine (8-8, 3-3 Landmark) in the second half, other than tying them 39-39 with 12 left, as the Mariners consistently held a small lead. The game came down to the final minutes full of foul shots and time-outs.

With two left on the clock the Eagles only trailed by one thanks to a jumper from Jeremy Hays (McMechen, W.Va./John Marshall). As the Mariners gave away the ball with 21 seconds left things looked promising for the Eagles, yet Juniata couldn't capitalize on it and committed a turnover of its own. Two missed free throws by Juniata and two made free throws by the Mariners did not help the cause. The Eagles trailed by seven at the remainder of the game.

Juniata shot 43.5 percent from the field and made 68.2 percent of its foul shots. The Eagles committed 18 turnovers in which the Mariners turned into 16 points. The Mariners shot 41.5 percent from the field, making a solid 82.9 percent of their free throws. The Mariners committed 21 turnovers and the Eagles turned those errors into 15 points. Each team shot a dead even 25 percent from behind the arc.

Raymond now has back-to-back game-highs after posting 18 against Moravian College last weekend and 18 more tonight. Raymond shot 4-of-10 from the field and 10-of-11 free throws. Ankney collected a team-high of eight rebounds for the night.

Kevin Kerr had the scoring team-high for the Mariners with 15 points and went 4-for-4 on foul shots. The Eagles held Matt Heuber at only four points yet he collected the majority of the rebounds (8) for the team.

Juniata will host another Landmark Conference opponent tomorrow, Drew University, in Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center at 2:00 p.m.


Our readers respond...

Be the first to provide a response.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.