MSMC Knights Edged on the Road at Purchase

PURCHASE – The Mount Saint Mary College Men’s Basketball team wrapped up the regular season series against Purchase with a tight 70-67 road loss Saturday afternoon. Paul Sienke led four Knights in double-figures on the day with a team-high 17 points.

Saturday’s loss drops Mount Saint Mary to 5-16 overall on the season and to 4-9 in Skyline Conference play, while Purchase moves to 6-14 overall and 5-9 in league action.

First Half
Mount Saint Mary raced out to a 7-0 lead on the Panthers over the opening 2:55 of the contest on a Jayden Figuer triple and buckets from Sienke and Chris Yearwood.

The Knights extended their advantage to 12-4 on a three-point play from Jayden Racca with 15:40 left in the opening stanza.

The Panthers answered with the next eight points to knot the score at 12-12 on an Eric Block three-pointer at the 12:41 mark of the first half.

Yearwood gave the Knights back a 14-12 advantage on the next possession and the Mount maintained the advantage until the 4:05 mark of the half.

After the Mount jumped in front 22-16 on a Mike Dedda conversion, Purchase answered with 10 of the next 14 points to pull even on another Block triple with 4:05 left before halftime.

Block added another trey to push the Panthers in front 31-28 and started an 8-3 stretch to end the opening period.

Yearwood hit a free-throw to stop the Purchase run and J.P. Egan converted a layup in the final minute to bring the Knights to within 36-31 at the intermission.

Mount Saint Mary shot 38.2-percent from the floor in the first 20 minutes with three triples.
Purchase converted at 51.6-percent before halftime and made five three-pointers.

Second Half
Purchase pushed its lead to double-figures for the first time on a pair of Malcolm Hansford-Whyte free-throws that gave it a 43-33 advantage just under three minutes into the second stanza.

The Panthers’ advantage grew to a game-high 13 points when Jordan Knochen canned a three-pointer to give them a 46-33 advantage at the 16:23 mark.

The Panthers maintained the second half advantage until the 9:55 mark of the half when Yearwood finished a three-point play to give the Mount a 52-51 lead, its only advantage of the half.

Purchase answered with the next three points, all from the free-throw line, to move back in front 54-52 with just under nine minutes left in regulation time.

The two teams traded the next three baskets before the Panthers scored six straight points to open a 62-56 lead with 5:02 remaining.

Mount Saint Mary sliced its disadvantage down to 62-59 following three straight points from Yearwood.

Figueroa buried a three-pointer with 44 seconds left to bring the Knights to within 66-64 and a three-point play from Sienke brought the Knights to within a single point, at 68-67, with five ticks left.

Block knocked in two free-throws with three seconds left and then the Panthers forced a turnover to secure the tight three-point victory.

Mount Saint Mary improved to 42.3-percent shooting after halftime, but went just 1-for-5 from three-point range.

Purchase cooled to 28.6-percent shooting in the second half, but made two triples and outscored the Knights 16-11 from the stripe.

For The Knights
Sienke finished a strong day with 17 points on 6-for-12 shooting from the floor and a 5-for-6 effort from the free-throw line.

He collected five rebounds and handed out an assist for the Knights.

Yearwood continued his strong season with 16 points to go along with three rebounds and a pair of assists.

Figueroa chipped in 12 points and added six rebounds while matching the team-high in assists with three.

Racca came off the bench to add 11 points for the Knights.

Egan led the Mount on the glass with eight rebounds and joined Figueroa with three assists.

Connor Cyran secured six caroms and blocked a pair of shots for the Knights.

For The Panthers
Block finished a big day for the Panthers with 26 points off the bench on 9-for-16 shooting, including four triples.

Hansford-Whyte scored 13 points and collected seven rebounds.

Knochen closed the win with nine points and was one of three players to lead the team with seven rebounds.

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