LOCATION: Cincinnati, Ohio (Harrington Center)
Mount St. Joseph (12-6. 9-2 HCAC) defeated Bluffton (9-9, 4-7 HCAC) 76-59. The win, coupled with a Defiance loss, gives the Lions the outright lead in the HCAC.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Mount came out of the gates a bit sluggish in the first half, struggling to make shots in the early going. Senior Femi Thompson came off the bench to give the Lions a spark in the first half, scoring 11 points on 5 of 7 shooting from the field. That performance and a 17-13 edge in rebounding helped the Lions to go into the break leading 35-30.
Coming out of the break the Mount scored the first 6 points to extend the lead to 11, and from that point the game was never closer than 10 points. Late in the half the Lions held a 12 point lead, Andrew Finley hit 3-pointers on consecutive possessions to put the game away. The most telling stat of the game was the Lions bench outscoring the Beavers bench 26-0, which was instrumental in the win.
Erik Edwards had a huge double-double for the Lions, scoring 13 points and pulling in 17 rebounds. Thompson ended the game with 19 points off the bench. Travis Combs pitched in 15 points to go along with 6 rebounds.
The Lions travel on Saturday to face Manchester (10-8, 7-4 HCAC). The game is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start.