KINGS POINT, N.Y. – The Susquehanna men’s basketball team struggled to contain the USMMA offense and fell 81-66 to the Mariners on Saturday afternoon in Landmark Conference road action.
The 81 points are the most scored against SU (5-10, 1-3) this season. Against the Mariners (9-6, 2-4), the Crusaders shot only 36 percent from the field and 61 percent from the free throw line. Susquehanna also had just 22 points in the paint while USMMA had 40.
SU freshman Brandon Hedley (Silver Spring, Md./Salisbury Prep.) accounted for 21 of SU’s 66 points, 15 of which came from three-point land. Classmate Josh Miller (Strasburg, Pa./Lampeter Strasburg) was the only other Crusader in double figures as he finished with 12 points in his 18 minutes of action off the bench.
Five minutes into the action and it was only a 4-4 game before a Hedley three put SU ahead by one (7-6) with 14:23 on the clock. Two Mike Perillo (Holmdel, N.J./Holmdel) free throws just 30 seconds later upped that lead to three (9-6) before five unanswered Mariners put the Crusaders in a five-point hole (14-9).
Susquehanna found itself down by nine, 20-11, and the team fell into a double-digit deficit (23-11) inside the nine-minute mark.
With 4:30 left in the half USMMA’s lead was seven (26-19) before an 8-3 run made it 34-22 with just over 75 seconds to play in the half. By the time the half wound down, the Mariners led SU 35-24. Hedley led Susquehanna with 11 points in the half, nine of which came from three-point range.
USMMA scored seven of the second half’s first nine points to go ahead 42-26. The Crusaders then proceeded to quickly fall into a 20-point hole (49-29) after less than four minutes of play in the half.
It remained a 20-point game, 58-38, with just over 14 minutes to play. However, a Miller three at 9:43 trimmed that USMMA lead to 11 (60-49) and four minutes later, two more Perillo free throws made it a 10-point contest (68-58).
With 4:30 left to play, the Crusaders managed to make it a single-digit USMMA lead after an A.J. Dean (Harrisburg, Pa./Susquehanna Twp.) layup made it 68-60.
Unfortunately, Susquehanna pulled no closer over the remaining 4:35 minutes of action and the team eventually fell by a 15-point margin (81-66), due in part to the Mariners’ 13-6 run to end the game.
The Crusaders retake the court on Wednesday travel to Catholic at 7 p.m.
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