By Justin Satkowski
NEWBURGH – Mount Saint Mary College had the ninth-ranked University of Scranton on the ropes Thursday evening but couldn’t deliver the knockout punch as the Royals rallied for a 64-57 victory in non-conference action. Scranton remains unbeaten at 6-0, while the Knights drop to 4-4.
With the lead from the opening tip, Mount junior Joe Stabach hit one-of-two free throws resulting from a technical foul to give the Knights a 47-40 advantage with eight minutes to play. Scranton junior Jason Pierce banked home a layup with 6:37 remaining and when the ensuing block-charge call went the way of the Royals, Pierce completed the three-point play.
Sophomore Ross Danzig hit a three-pointer to cut the deficit to one and sophomore Michael Fee followed with a triple from the corner to give the Royals their first lead, 49-47, with 4:45 remaining. All told, the back-to-back threes were part of a 15-0 run for the Royals that concluded with a bucket from senior Travis Farrell at the 1:10 mark to make the score, 55-47.
Mount senior Lenny Ragaglia hit a three-pointer with 39 seconds remaining, the first field goal for the Knights in more than eight minutes, to cut the deficit back to five. Scranton hit 9-of-10 free throws down the stretch to claim a 64-57 victory.
Farrell led Scranton with 14 points, while senior Tim Lavelle had 12. Pierce added 12 points and nine boards.
For the Knights, junior Donte Howell finished with 13 points and six assists, while Stabach added 13 points. Mount Saint Mary shot just 29.4-percent in the second half to finish at 36.1-percent for the game.
Mount Saint Mary played extremely well in the first half, stretching the lead to as many as 13 on a three-pointer from Ragaglia with 7:05 to play in the opening stanza. Scranton closed the half on a 5-0 run to cut the deficit to 30-24 at the break.
Up next for the Knights is a trip to Vassar on Wednesday, December 12th. The game is slated for 7:00 p.m.