Mount mauls Monmouth, 81-65

January 21, 1994|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,Staff Writer

EMMITSBURG -- It was the game Mount St. Mary's had to have and the team went right after it.

With high-pressure defense leading to a host of baskets in transition, the Mountaineers blitzed Monmouth in the second half and scored an 81-65 Northeast Conference victory last night.

The victory keeps Mount St. Mary's (7-8, 4-4) within sight of the top in the NEC and continued Monmouth's troubles away from home. The Hawks are 2-6 on the road and are averaging only 66 points on foreign courts, 30 fewer than at home.

Mount St. Mary's blazed ahead, 50-41 with 11 straight points at the start of the second half and never surrendered the lead again.

Monmouth (8-7, 5-2) suffered its second straight conference loss while committing 29 turnovers and taking 30 fewer shots than the Mountaineers.

It was the fourth straight Mount St. Mary's win in the series.

Michael Watson led four Mountaineers in double figures with 21 points. Chris McGuthrie had 17 despite hitting just seven of 23 field-goal tries and Riley Inge contributed 14.

Both teams were coming off conference defeats Tuesday night and neither could gain a decided edge in the first half.

Monmouth led for most of the half, once by seven points, but settled for a 41-39 lead at the break when the Mountaineers scored the final four points.

After they traded leads for the first five minutes, the Hawks unleashed a 10-0 run fueled by three-pointers by John Giraldo and Jack Gordon to surge ahead 19-12.

But a three-point play by Mount center Randy Edney halted the streak and they stayed within three points of each other until the final five minutes of the half.

Monmouth seemed on the verge of pulling comfortably ahead several times, but committed four turnovers directly under its own basket and Mount St. Mary's converted them into six points to stay close.

A 6-0 streak capped by Sean Ryan's three-pointer gave the Hawks a 41-35 advantage before single free throws by Inge and Doug John and an inside bucket by Watson rejuvenated the Mounts.

Monmouth finished the half with 56 percent shooting (14 of 25) while Mount St. Mary's had its troubles, hitting only 37.8 percent with guards Inge and Chris McGuthrie combining for just five of 19 from the field.

Unlike Tuesday when coach Jim Phelan ordered his team to pound away inside, Edney and the rest of the Mount big men spent considerable time on the bench while Phelan applied defensive pressure with a smaller lineup.

It was the eighth game in 16 days for Mount St. Mary's, which had fallen to a tie for seventh place in the league after losing to Wagner.

Giraldo topped Monmouth with 12 points and five assists and Glenn Stocke had eight points as both players hit four of five from the floor.

Four free throws and a three-pointer enabled Inge to top the Mount with nine points and Edney and Watson contributed eight apiece.

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