YORK, PA-York College
freshman point guard Julian Watson (Odenton,
Md./Arundel) notched a career-high 20 points but it was
not enough to lift the Spartans past McDaniel College as the
Spartans fell 66-63 on Saturday evening in the opening round of the
Hampton Inn Coaches vs. Cancer Classic. The Spartans fall to 3-8
overall as they have lost four straight while the
Green Terror improve to 5-3 with the victory.
The Spartans held the lead most of the first half and continued to carry their advantage midway through the second half until Miguel Jones hit a jumper with 8:51 remaining in regulation. That began a stretch that saw the lead go back and forth five times before the Green Terror secured the lead for good on a Louis Sarris-Grau lay up with 5:12 remaining on the clock. That basket started an 8-2 spurt that gave the Green Terror a 63-58 lead. York had the opportunity to draw closer but struggled from the free throw line late as the Spartans went just 3-for-6 from the line over the final 2:38 of regulation. With 2:09 left, the Spartans cut the lead to 63-60 but a Kevin Henry jumper pushed the lead back to five before an Andrew Pawlyk (Bernville, Pa./Tulpehocken) free throw cut it back to four. Jones split a pair of free throws with 25 seconds remaining before Nick Brady (Hanover, Pa./Delone Catholic) closed out the scoring with a layup with 14 seconds left.
York did manage to get a turnover with 9.7 seconds remaining but their three point attempt with just over two seconds left was unable to find the mark as the final horn sounded.
Sarris-Grau led the Green Terror with 17 points as he was 7-for-11 from the field and 3-for-6 from the free throw line. He also pulled in five boards for the game. Henry contributed 12 points, five assists, and four rebounds to the McDaniel attack. Josh McKay was the third McDaniel player to reach double figures with 10 points while he also had four rebounds and three assists. Chad Arrington chipped in with nine points and nine rebounds for the Green Terror.
Watson paced York as he was 7-for-9 from the floor and 6-for-10 from the free throw line. Watson also had five rebounds and four assists for the Green and White. Junior Jeremy Keefer (Palmyra, Pa./Palmyra) was the other Spartan to reach double figures with 11 points while he pulled in a team-high seven rebounds. Brady contributed nine points and six rebounds for the Green and White.
In the first half of the game, the Spartans had a game-high eight point lead on three different occasions with the final time coming at 34-26, 2:28 before the intermission.
The Spartans finished the game shooting 49% from the floor while they shot 58.3% from the free throw line. McDaniel converted 45.6% from the field and were worse from the free throw line as they made just 52.2% from the charity stripe.
The Green Terror out-rebounded York 36-31 for the game including 14 offensive rebounds that led to 10 second chance points for McDaniel.
The Spartans will now face Alvernia, 55-52 losers to Penn State-Behrend, in the consolation game on Sunday at 4:00 pm. McDaniel will face the Lions for the tournament championship on Sunday at 6:00 pm at the Grumbacher Center.
Julian Watson photo courtesy of Steve Doemland