Mount Drops Overtime Heartbreaker to Alvernia

NEWPORT NEWS, VA. – The Mount Saint Mary College Men’s Basketball team suffered consecutive losses for the first time this season following a 63-58 overtime defeat to Alvernia in the Consolation Game of the 2018 Crowne Plaza Captains Shootout hosted by Christopher Newport. Junior Kendall Francis was the only Knight in double-figures with 17 points.

A tightly contested game throughout, the tilt was played within a seven-point window through the overtime period. The Mount broke a 6-6 tie with a Francis triple at the 17:08 mark of the first half, starting an 11-6 spurt. Connor Bacci capped the run with a lay-in at the 12:00 mark, giving the Knights a 17-12 advantage, their largest of the game.

Mount Saint Mary maintained the lead until a Nick Youngkin jumper pushed Alvernia in front 18-17 with the Golden Wolves grabbing a three-point advantage on four occasions in the final nine minutes of the half.

Following a Justin Thomas conversion that gave Alvernia a 26-23 edge with just under five minutes left in the half, the Knights closed the period with seven of the final nine points to carry a slim 30-28 advantage into the intermission.

The Knights shot an efficient 52-percent from the floor in the opening period, led by a 4-for-8 effort and 10 points from Francis. Keon Taylor matched Francis with 10 points for the Golden Wolves, with Alvernia converting at 40.6-percent despite an 0-for-9 effort from three-point range prior to the break.

Alvernia knotted the scoring in the opening half minute of the second half and used a 10-2 stretch to surge in front 44-37 on a Youngkin bucket with 9:25 left in regulation time.

Alvernia matched its largest lead of the game on two other occasions and maintained the lead in the second half until Francis buried a three-pointer at the horn to knot the score at 52-52. The bucket capped a 9-2 run over the final 5:18 to force overtime.

The Knights cooled to 26.5-percent shooting in the second half and hit just one of their seven three-point field goal attempts. Alvernia knocked in a pair of triples in the second stanza and outscored the Mount by five from the free-throw line.

Mount Saint Mary never led in the overtime period a hit on just one of its four field goal attempts, a three-pointer from Tristan Millett with eight seconds left in the contest. A Taylor bucket early in the stanza put Alvernia in front for good and it saw its advantage grow to as many as seven points on a pair of Thomas free-throws with 19 seconds left to play.

Francis was held to just seven points after halftime and finished the game 5-for-15 from the floor overall, including a trio of triples. He added an assist and a pair of steals for the Knights. Jameson Morton came off the bench to finish with eight points and five rebounds, while Ethan Fox hauled in 13 rebounds and was one of three Knights to finish with six points.

Youngkin led all scorers in the game for Alvernia with 23 tallies with Taylor chipping in with 15 points. Anthony Dadson rounded out a double-double effort for the Golden Wolves with 11 points and team-high 12 rebounds.

Mount Saint Mary finished the day shooting 36.5-percent and went 6-for-18 from three-point range. Alvernia converted at 34.4-percent and outscored the Mount by 11 from the free-throw line and by 10 in second chance scoring.

At 7-3 overall on the season, the Mount returns to Skyline Conference play and begins 2019 on the road at Maritime on January 3. Tip-off with the Privateers is set for 7:00 p.m.

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