By Ian Jackson
The Roosevelt men’s basketball team held eighth-ranked Robert Morris Illinois’ ChicagoLand Collegiate Athletic Conference-leading offense 16 points below its season average, but the Lakers couldn’t get past the Eagles with the score of 70-77.
With energy at an all-time high, it will be the last year that Robert Morris’s head coach Al Bruehl will coach for the Eagles. On February 8th, 2017 the men’s Basketball team went toe to toe with their college adversaries.
“Our game plan was to limit their big three in Paul, Randolph and Levy. We held Randolph to 0 points, but Levy and Paul and Booth stepped up big for them. Our transition defense was key #2 and we were not very good at it, also limiting their offensive rebounds,” said Coach Joe Griffin.
Kevin Day scored a career-high 17 points off the bench to lead the Lakers, who also received 13 points from Jake Ludwig. Joshua Dillingham turned in 11 points and 13 rebounds for his eighth double-double of the season, while Adam Alexander added 11 points and seven rebounds.
“The one thing we struggled with was with helpside defense and boxing out the other players, What we need to do to turn this around is be tougher and communicate better on defense,” said Senior Guard/Forward Damian Zalewski.
Robert Morris went on a 12-1 run early in the second half. The Eagles would hold a double-digit lead for a large portion of the second half until the Lakers attempted one of their patented second-half comebacks to dig out of the deficit.
“Unfortunately, we failed to meet our goal. We came up short and all we can do now if finish strong for us as seniors on an unforgettable four years,” said Senior Guard Jason Markus.
Roosevelt made it a two possession game late after three-pointers by Korey Ryan and Peter Catchings, the latter’s trey making it a five-point game with 35 seconds left.
“We must focus more on our transition defense, and we have to continue to move the ball inside out to continue to get good shot. We have to be the scrappier, tougher team ever timeout,” Griffin said.
With the a few games to go before the conference tournament, the Lakers are gearing to regroup to get ready for senior night to get a bid in the tournament.