Tuesday, January 24, 2006
By Bob Heller
Just like it was in their first meeting, a strong second half rally by the University of the Sciences men's basketball team fell short as the Philadelphia University Rams defeated the Devils 71-64 tonight at the Bobby Morgan Arena.
The loss drops the Devils record to 7-10 overall and 5-7 in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) games and snaps the Devils four game win streak. Philadelphia improves to 13-8 overall and 8-4 in league play.
The Devils were led by Bill Kurtz (Jr., Shawnee HS/Shamong, NJ), who scored 19 points (5 'threes'). Howard Lanier (So., St. Augustine Prep/Sicklerville, NJ) and Eric Cangelosi (Jr., Camden Catholic HS/Haddon Heights, NJ) added 12 points each and Collin Harrington (Jr., Bishop Eustace HS/Sewell, NJ) chipped in 10.
The Rams, who did not substitute the entire game, were led by Tayron Thomas. Thomas connected on 11 of 20 shots from the field, (5-for-8 from downtown) and 3-for-3 from the free throw line for 30 points. Christian Burns added 23 while Mike Dunn chipped in 13.
After the Rams had built a 20-point lead in the first half primarily from making eight of their first nine three-point field goals, the Devils rallied to cut the deficit in half with a 15-5 run to close the half and make the score 37-27 at the break.
USP opened the second half with a 9-3 run to cut the lead to four 40-36 at the 17:29 mark, getting six of the nine points from Keith Dundas (So., Pennsbury HS/Morrisville, PA) (9 points, 5 rebounds). The Rams countered with an 18-6 run to go back up by 16, 58-42 with 12:40 left to play. Again the Devils rallied, outscoring the Rams 17-5 over the next 8:37 to pull within four again, 63-59 at the 4:03 mark. Kurtz started the rally with a long 'trey' with Dundas and Lanier adding baskets to reduce the deficit to single digits, 58-49 at the 8:36 mark. Harrington and Michael Mullane (Jr., Cherokee HS/Marlton, NJ) added layups while Burns scored the Rams only five points of the run to make the score 63-54. After a layup by Cangelosi, Kurtz finished the run the same way he started it, with a long '3-ball', making the score 63-59.
Neither team scored until the 1:20 mark when Burns made a pair of free throws to put the Rams back up by six, 65-59. Cangelosi added a pair of free throws to cut the lead back down to four 65-61 with 25 seconds left, but the Rams made four straight free throws to go back up by 10, 71-61. Lanier sank a three-point field goal at the buzzer to make the final score 71-64.
The Rams outshot the Devils 49.0% to 40.4% from the field and were 10-for-21 from beyond the arc, compared to USP's 7-for-17. Both teams made 11 free throws and the Rams held a slight advantage on the boards 32-31.
The Devils take to the road for their next game, a CACC matchup at Dominican College on Saturday, January 28, 2006. Tip off is scheduled for 3 p.m.