McKeesport, Pa. - Despite a hard-fought second-half of action, the Penn State Greater Allegheny men's basketball team came up short against Penn State University Athletic Conference adversary, Penn State New Kensington, as the clock wound down to zero in Wunderley Gymnasium, 65-63.
Freshman forward Tony Patterson-Brown (Philadelphia, Pa./Roxborough) bucketed the first points of the game with a set of completed layups for the home team. New Kensington ran up the score to 11-4 before senior guard Matt Williams (Philadelphia, Pa./Mastery Charter Shoemaker Campus) slashed a pair of free-throws. Freshman guard Khari Hicks (Pittsburgh, Pa./Imani Christian) tacked on a layup before New Ken swelled to 18-8 just five minutes into the game.
Freshman guard Jashaun Fontanez (Downingtown, Pa./Downingtown West) put down a three-pointer before Hicks added another layup. Senior forward Petrie Addison (Fort Myers, Fla./Florida Christian) made a layup as Fontanez laid on a jumper with three foul shots. Addison and freshman guard Antonio Lucic-Jozak (Pittsburgh, Pa./Baldwin) matched one another with a layup apiece as Patterson-Brown dropped a jumper with a little less than two minutes left until the half. Fontanez slashed a foul shot to tally the final point before the break, Greater Allegheny behind New Kensington, 38-27.
Greater Allegheny opened up the second-half by holding New Kensington to a 15-2 run through the first seven minutes of action. Within those seven minutes, the Greater Allegheny offense saw huge contribution from Addison, who hammered down nine of those points, GA now in the lead, 42-40.
New Kensington added points while Hicks put down a trey to bring the score to a 45-all deadlock. Fontanez and Addison marked points from the foul line before Hicks and Lucic-Jozak made contributions to give the home team a 56-52 lead with less than four minutes left of PSUAC action. Fontanez put down a layup as New Kensington pulled away to a 63-58 lead with just 21 seconds left to play. Fontanez knocked down a layup and forced a New Kensington turnover under the GA basket. Fontanez pulled the ball out and nailed a three-pointer to tie the game at 63 with just five seconds left of regulation. New Kensington went on a fast break for the hoop where Dorian Broadwater knocked down a last second jumper to give New Kensington the 65-63 PSUAC victory.
Fontanez dropped 19 points on the night alongside eight rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Addison shot 63.6% (7-from-11) from the floor, as the forward notched yet another double-double with 17 points, 16 boards, three steals and two assists through the edge-out. Hicks added 15 points as the freshman shot 100% (2-of-2) from the foul line.
As a team, Greater Allegheny shot 63.2% (12-of-19) from the free-throw line. GA managed 20 points off turnovers along with 19 points off second-chance and 32 points in the paint. Low completion numbers on the floor, 37.5% (24-of-64), and outside the arc, 15.8% (3-of-19), would ultimately be Greater Allegheny's demise through the 40 minutes of action.
Greater Allegheny (8-15, 5-9 PSUAC) will host a Penn State University Athletic Conference bout on Saturday, as Penn State Fayette comes to Wunderley Gymnasium. The men are scheduled to tip-off after the women, around 3 p.m.