STEUBENVILLE – The Franciscan men's basketball team dropped a hard-fought game to Medaille Saturday afternoon as the Barons fell 81-54 in the AMCC matchup.
The Barons kept the score close for most of the first half. Trailing 13-8 with 11:48 to play, sophomore Juwan Perkins stepped back and hit a three to cut the Maverick lead back down to two, 13-11, but Matt Hollenback pushed the lead back to six for Medaille with back-to-back jumpers with 10:08 to play. Freshman Aaron Foldi answered with a jumper of his own on the Barons' next possession to cut the lead to 17-13, but Medaille used a 9-0 run to take a 13-point lead, 26-13, with 7:01 to play.
Medaille maintained its double-digit lead for the rest of the half and closed out the period with a 10-0 run to lead 43-21 going into halftime. Freshman Joe Schriner hit the last basket for the Barons in the half as he drained a three-pointer with 3:08 to play to trim the lead back down to 10, 31-21, but the Barons couldn't get the ball to fall for the rest of the half.
The Mavericks were able to maintain their 20-point lead for most of the second half despite strong defensive efforts by the Barons. Perkins cut the lead back down to 20, 70-50, with a layup at the 4:41 mark and freshman Matt Trent hit a pair of free throws to get the Barons within 18, 70-52, with 2:52 to play. The Mavericks however kicked up the pressure and out-scored Franciscan 11-2 in the final 2:42 of the game to close out the 81-54 win.
Perkins led the Barons with 16 points while freshman Michael Mendicino chipped in 10. Junior Keoni Sablan pulled down nine rebounds to go with his seven points. Senior Derrick David was steady for the Barons with four assists and three steals.
"Derrick is a kid that does everything you ask of him as a coach," commented head coach Joe Wallace. "I know he doesn't score but he had four assists, a couple of steals and gets deflections. He is trying to stabilize this team through a difficult game and a difficult stretch. I will always play him because he never backs down and never gives in. It's a shame he has to leave us in a few months, I just love the way he plays this game."
Franciscan returns to the court on Wednesday when the Barons welcome Mt. Aloysius to Kuzma Court for an 8pm tip off.