Men’s Basketball Beats LIU Post, Falls to Top Team in Country over Break
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The Le Moyne men’s basketball team went 1-1 over Thanksgiving break, with a 82-76 win over the LIU Post Pioneers and a 76-53 loss to the unbeaten West Liberty University Hilltoppers.
The Dolphins showed they were ready to compete at home against LIU Post right from the start of the contest. They took control early, going on a 17-4 run to extend their lead to 28-14 halfway through the first half. Junior guard Anthony Richards knocked out a three-pointer with six seconds remaining in the first half to go up by six before intermission. Richards finished the first half with nine points on 3-5 shooting from three-point range and added four assists.
The Dolphins took a lead by as much as 17 during the second half, but the Pioneers never completely went away. They eventually cut the Dolphins’ lead to just seven with 11 seconds remaining on the clock, but it was not quite enough.
Richards tallied 15 points for the Dolphins, shooting 4-7 from the field and nailing three trifectas from long range. He was a perfect 4-4 from the free-throw line. Junior forward Isaiah Eisendorf contributed 14 points of his own. He was also perfect at the free-throw line, 6-6, and recorded two blocks.
Senior guard Jemal Mosley had 19 points and seven rebounds in the game for the Pioneers.
The Dolphins shot 44 percent from the field and went 25-29 from the free-throw line. The Pioneers struggled from the line, shooting 15-24 at just 63 percent. The Dolphins took care of the ball, only turning it over eight times in the contest.
“We executed our offense well,” said Richards. “Coach Beilein did a great job at calling plays to expose their defense. The guys found me when I was open and I knocked down some shots.”
Later in the week, Le Moyne gave the top-ranked Hilltoppers a challenge in the first half. The game went back and forth with 12 lead changes before they were locked up at halftime, 27-27. The Dolphins’ had eight of their nine players in the points column, while the Hilltoppers only had five. In the first half, Richards had six points on two three-pointers, while sophomore guard C.J. Asuncion-Byrd, junior guard Russell Sangster, and junior guard Tanner Hyland all had four points. Junior guard Dan Monteroso led West Liberty with 15 points on 6-8 shooting before the intermission.
West Liberty showed in the second half why they’re ranked the No. 1 team in Division II. The Hilltoppers began the second half on a 13-0 run to jump ahead 40-27 with 15:16 remaining. The Dolphins were outscored 49-26 after halftime and that was the game.
Sangster finished with 11 points and eight rebounds, but committed five of the team’s 12 turnovers. Asuncion-Byrd had 11 points and three assists.
Monteroso of the Hilltoppers led the way with 25 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks for the game. They had four players in double figures.
The Dolphins shot poorly from the field, converting only 19-of-53 attempts. West Liberty shot 43 percent from the field.
Le Moyne now has an overall record of 4-2 and will continue to compete in Northeast-10 Conference play in the upcoming weeks. They look to improve their record with some big wins over conference opponents.
“We’re feeling confident after staying with the best team in the country for a full half,” said senior Stan Buczek. “We’re looking forward to grinding in conference play in the upcoming games.”