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Lions Post 72-69 Upset of AMCC Rival Mount Aloysius
2/6/2013 — ALTOONA, Pa. - Penn State Altoona men's basketball kept its Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference playoff hopes alive with an exciting 72-69 upset of crosstown rival Mount Aloysius College on Wednesday night in front of a standing-room-only crowd in the Adler Gym.
While a win tonight for the Lions was not mathematically necessary in their hunt to make the AMCC Tournament, the victory was crucial as the team keeps pace in the standings with Pitt-Greensburg, which also has six wins in the conference.
The Lions posted one of their finest shooting performances of the season, going 27-for-53 (50.9%) from the field. This included a 10-for-23 (43.5%) performance from beyond the arc.
Durant Harvin (Baltimore, MD/Franklin) led Penn State Altoona with 18 points while dishing out five assists.
Matt Gehret (Altoona, PA/Altoona) scored 14 to go along with six rebounds, five assists, and two blocks.
Jonathan Ross (Columbia, SC/Cross Creek) contributed 13 points, and Mitch Moyer (Port Matilda, PA/Bald Eagle) added 11 points. Ross and Moyer each connected from three-point range three times.
John Brennan (Philadelphia, PA/St. John Neumann-Goretti) posted a pair of game-highs, grabbing 11 rebounds and tallying six assists. He also blocked two shots.
Penn State Altoona came out strong, opening the game by outscoring Mount Aloysius 22-9 by the 11:36 mark.
Brennan's tip-in at 18:21 broke a 2-2 tie, followed by Harvin's steal and fastbreak layup that made it 6-2.
Harvin hit a three-pointer at 15:29 to make it 11-5, and Gehret tipped in a shot at 14:26 to make it 13-5.
The Lions' game-opening run was capped by Michael Wigfield's (Flinton, PA/Glendale) three-pointer.
Gehret nailed a three at 9:55 to increase his team's lead to 14 points, 25-11.
But Mount Aloysius put together a 10-2 run to come within six points. Demetrius Davis' fastbreak layup at 8:38 made it 25-16. At 6:15, Davis hit a three-pointer to cut the Lions' lead to 21-21.
Moyer's three at 2:39 put Penn State Altoona back up by 11, 38-27.
Austin Griffith (Erie, PA/Harbor Creek) hit a jumper just before the buzzer, and Penn State Altoona went into halftime with a 40-30 advantage.
Harvin hit another three at 18:39 of the second half to keep his team's lead at 10. Moyer's trey at 15:59 increased Penn State Altoona's lead to 12, 49-37.
A 9-0 run by the Mounties brought them to within three points of the Lions' lead, but Penn State Altoona answered with a 7-0 run to make it 56-46.
The Lions continued to nurse their lead. A pair of free throws by Harvin at 7:59 made it 60-50.
But Mount Aloysius again went on a short run, capped by Kyle Baughman's layup at 6:15 that cut the home team's lead to 60-57.
Dameon Turner's fastbreak score at 3:42 made it just a one point game, 65-64.
Gehret followed with a layup and foul shot to give the Lions some breathing room, but the Mounties fought back to tie the game 68-68 at 1:10.
Wigfield came up with a big shot at the 38 second mark, making a shot jumper to give Penn State Altoona a 70-68 lead. He followed with a big play on defense, forcing a ball out of bounds off of a Mount Aloysius player to give possession back to the Lions.
Ross sunk a pair of free throws with 11 seconds left to put his team up 72-68.
Davis made a free throw with four seconds remaining on the clock to make it a one-possession game, but then missed the second. The Lions' defense held and preserved the victory.
Penn State Altoona hosts its final home game of the season against AMCC opponent D'Youville College this Saturday, February 9 at 3:00 PM. The Lions will be looking for another important victory in their quest to secure a berth into the AMCC Tournament.
Photo: Penn State Altoona senior guard Durant Harvin led the Lions with 18 points in Wednesday's win.