Hepburn double-double in LHU defeat
LOCK HAVEN Going into his team’s meeting with West Chester, Lock Haven basketball coach Mike Nestor was hoping to put together back-to-back wins after his team disposed of Cheyney the night before.
However, the Bald Eagles’ efforts against a strong Golden Ram squad were not enough as they fell 84-74 in PSAC-crossover action at Thomas Field House.
“They came out and jumped on us early,” said LHU head coach Mike Nestor. “The disappointing thing for us was the first half, not so much the effort we had, the shots we missed or not being real good defensively, but it was just our whole attitude. We got smacked in the face a little bit and we just didn’t do a good job as a team of bouncing back.”
The Golden Rams came out strong on offense, building up a 25-10 lead nine minutes into the game.
However, the Bald Eagles kept battling until they chipped away at the West Chester lead to get their deficit back to single digits at 35-27 with three minutes left in the opening half.
But just as they had done earlier in the half, the Rams turned up the action on both ends of the floor as they ran off seven straight points to lead by 15 with 1:38 remaining before taking a 19-point lead (46-27) to the locker room at the break.
“It wasn’t one of those screaming locker room speeches at halftime,” said Nestor. “Let’s just go out and chip away at it and I thought we played well in the second half.”
As for the big letdown prior to halftime, Nestor and his Bald Eagles were on the other end of what happened in the win over Cheyney.
One of the big factors leading to their lead was in the turnover category where the Golden Rams only coughed the ball up twice, while the Bald Eagles played giveaway 13 times.
Leading the Bald Eagles on the stat sheet was Wali Hepburn who finished his outstanding game with a career-best 14 boards and 33 points for his double-double.
“I was just trying to play hard to keep our team in it,” said Hepburn. “I was trying to do it any way I could, whether it was crashing the boards or scoring. I was just trying to do anything I could to keep us in the game.”
WEST CHESTER (7-4, 5-2 PSAC)
JOHNSON, Carl 6-15 3-4 17; BREEDEN, Jon 5-9 2-2 13; GIVENS, Shannon 6-9 0-0 13; BLAKE, Corey 4-9 2-2 10; MACK, Jaleel 4-9 0-0 10; HOCKADAY, Troy 2-5 2-4 6; FRANS, Eric 2-4 0-0 4; WILLIAMSON, Harley 1-1 2-6 4; SHARKEY, Tom 2-4 0-0 4; FLECKEN, Tim 1-3 0-0 3; WISELY, Matt 0-2 0-0 0; McKEANEY, Ryan 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 33-71 11-18 84.
LOCK HAVEN (5-5, 3-4 PSAC)
HEPBURN, Wali 11-17 10-12 33; JOHNSON, Terrell 5-10 0-0 15; FESTUS, Kasheef 3-9 2-3 8; GARCIA, Dave 2-5 1-3 6; RIVERS, Andre 0-0 5-8 5; MARSHALL, Armandi 2-8 1-2 5; COOPER, Elijah 1-2 0-0 2; WALTERS, Nate 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 24-52 19-28 74.
Halftime:?West Chester, 46-27. 3-point goals–West Chester 7-17 (JOHNSON, 2-3; MACK, 2-5; GIVENS, 1-2; FLECKEN, 1-3; BREEDEN, 1-2; BLAKE, 0-2), Lock Haven 7-17 (JOHNSON, 5-8; GARCIA, 1-3; HEPBURN, 1-5; COOPER, 0-1). Fouled out–Frans, Marshall. Rebounds–West Chester 32 (FRANS, 5), Lock Haven 40 (HEPBURN, 14). Assists–West Chester 17 (BREEDEN, 5), Lock Haven 8 (HEPBURN, 2; GARCIA, 2; FESTUS, 2). Total fouls–West Chester 22, Lock Haven 16. Technical fouls–West Chester team. A-135