ST. MARY'S, Md. – For the second time this season, Penn State Harrisburg hung with 25th-ranked team in the nation for a good portion of its contest against Capital Athletic Conference (CAC) foe St. Mary's (Md.). But for the second time this season, the Seahawks used timely buckets to slow the Blue & White charge and come away with the victory. On Saturday afternoon, Feb. 1, the Lions fell to the hometown Hawks 79-55.
For the second-straight game, senior captain Will Doyle (Franklin, Va. / Tidewater Academy) was Penn State Harrisburg's high-scorer. The versatile, do-it-all guard netted 17 points and upped his team-leading scoring average to 15.1 points per game for the season.
The Lions grabbed their first lead of the day at the 18:32 mark when sophomore Rayshaun Anderson-Brown (Carlisle, Pa. / Carlisle) converted a layup to make it 4-2. St. Mary's (Md.) regained the advantage and held strong over the next few minutes but a tip in by senior captain Kenny Stone (Philadelphia, Pa. / Scotland) reclaimed the lead for the visitors with 14:36 remaining in the first half.
The Seahawks fought back and eventually jumped back in front by as many as four points but Doyle kept the Blue & White within striking distance when he knocked down his first three-pointer of the afternoon and tied the score at 19 apiece at the 10:46 mark.
From there, however, the home team effectively put the game out of reach by putting together a momentum shifting 19-2 run to end the first half. After battling to keep Penn State Harrisburg at bay just minutes earlier, St. Mary's (Md.) took a commanding 38-21 lead into the break.
The Seahawks picked up where they left off when the second half got underway, scoring the first ten points of the half. In all, the Lions failed to score a point for nearly 13 minutes of game time and not until Doyle singlehandedly heated up over a one and half minute stretch did the home team's game-changing 29-2 run finally come to an end.
With the Blue & White trailing 48-21, Doyle converted back-to-back layups before connecting from beyond the arc and knocking down a pair of free throws to draw Penn State Harrisburg within 20 points with just over 16 minutes remaining in regulation. Unfortunately, Doyle and his Lion teammates were unable to keep up the comeback pace as the second half wore on.
Trailing 59-30, the Blue & White made one last valiant push, putting together a 15-0 run that saw junior Joey Farthing (Lancaster, Pa. / Hempfield), sophomores Jared Deibler (Middletown, Pa. / Middletown) and Jamaal Dubose (Bowie, Md. / Bowie) and freshmen Logan Stovall (Palmyra, Pa. / Palmyra Area) and Winton Lyle (Washington, D.C. / Bullis School) all contribute.
Despite cutting the once seemingly insurmountable deficit to 59-45 with 9:04 left to play, that's as close as Penn State Harrisburg would get.
Lyle contributed ten points off the bench while Stone, Farthing and Dubose netted six tallies apiece. Stone grabbed a team-high six rebounds while Farthing swiped four steals and dished out three assists. Deibler and Anderson-Brown added four points each.
St. Mary's (Md.) outshot the Lions from the field 47.6 percent to 33.9 percent and from the free throw line 90.9 percent to 76.5 percent. The Seahawks outrebounded Penn State Harrisburg 41-30 while the home team assisted on 20 of its 30 field goals compared to just eight for the Blue & White.
The loss dropped Penn State Harrisburg to 6-13 on the season and 3-8 in league play. The Lions find themselves mired in the midst of a six-game skid, despite playing 8th-ranked Wesley and cross-state rival York (Pa.) very tough during the stretch. The team's last win came on Jan. 11 when they defeated 14th-ranked Christopher Newport in overtime.
Penn State Harrisburg will look to right the ship when they travel to Frostburg State this Wednesday night, Feb. 5 for another CAC matchup. The Lions defeated the Bobcats 60-58 in the teams' first meeting earlier this season.
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