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Men fall in first round

Men's basketball season ends at the hands of CCU

Published: Monday, February 25, 2013

Updated: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 10:09

Basketball

photo by Lyddia Ankrom

Point Park Pioneer T.J. Heatherington protects the ball from a pair of Cincinnati Christian University defenders

Upon the moments leading into the men’s basketball tournament quarterfinal game on Saturday, the Point Park Pioneers, entering as the No. 5 seed, had high aspirations of coming out on top over Cincinnati Christian University (CCU), the No. 4 seed, as they had accomplished twice earlier in the regular season. That was not the case this time around, ending in a defeat of 87-70.

The Pioneers got off to a somewhat shaky start in the first 20 minutes of Saturday’s game, struggling to shoot only 28 percent from the field, trailing at the end of the first half with a score of 40-34. The Pioneers could not seem to extract themselves out of first gear and continued to fall behind as the game proceeded.

“We didn’t really come out like we wanted to win. We didn’t get off to a good start,” said junior guard Gabe McNeal. “Everybody has to be on the same page. If everybody is not on the same page, then you’re not going to win games.”

Point Park did turn up their shooting during the second half, almost doubling their percentage, which escalated to 43 percent. That was not enough to outscore CCU, who shot 49 percent in the second half and finished the game with a shooting percentage of 44. They will continue on to the KIAC semifinals on Feb. 25.

 “We just weren’t hitting shots. Nothing was going in for us,” said junior forward Josh Pohlot Monday afternoon. 

Pohlot came off the bench to contribute 12 points, the only other Pioneer player to reach double digits.

“Defense seemed to be our biggest flaw,” said senior guard T.J. Heatherington during a phone interview on Monday afternoon. “We also need to start working more on playing as a team and executing on offense.”

Heatherington finished the game with 20 points, and he was nine for nine from the free throw line.

“Defense really wins games. Anybody can score, what are you going to do on defense?” McNeal said.

 Heatherington finished his outstanding career with 1,594 points, ranking sixth in school history. He finished second in Point Park history with 479 assists.

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