Franciscan University of Steubenville’s men’s basketball team fell in its last home game of the season to the Hilbert College Hawks after a tight game that ended senior night in a 71-66 loss for the Barons on Saturday, Feb. 9, at 4 p.m.
Before the game, the Barons honored their two seniors Josh York and Juwan Perkins by presenting them with a gift as the players walked out with their parents to center court. The crowd gave a standing ovation as the fans cheered for their two seniors.
Play began with a basket by the Hilbert Hawks 30 seconds into the game, but about another half-minute later, a good layup in the paint by junior center Matt Trent evened the score. Play continued in like manner for the following six minutes of the game, with the two teams going back and forth scoring baskets and fighting for the lead.
Thanks to a 3-pointer by sophomore guard Sean Hickey, the Barons began to pull ahead, and Hickey lengthened the lead with a jumper a minute later, bringing the score to 19-14 Barons. Not to be taken likely, the Hawks regained control and evened the score to 20-20 within the next three minutes.
The Barons continued to gain points thanks especially to Trent, junior forward Joe Schriner, junior guard John Noce and freshman forward Travis Lien, but the Hawks continued fighting as well, and the two teams were neck-and-neck for the majority of the half, ending 42-41 Hawks after a successful last second jumper by Schriner.
Coming back from halftime, the Hawks increased their lead right off the bat, though a jumper and two successful free throws by junior forward Josh York helped to close the gap a little, bringing the score to 48-45.
The teams continued to trade baskets in the second half, but the Hawks maintained around a 3-point lead until they broke away and expanded their lead to nine points, 60-51, with nine minutes left in the half. York, Schriner and Noce added points to the board for the Barons, but their efforts proved to be not enough.
The Barons brought the final score to only a 5-point gap, and after a last-second missed 3-pointer by Schriner, the buzzer sounded and the game concluded, 71-66 Hawks.
“This is the way the season has gone for us,” Head Coach Joe Wallace said to the Athletic Department. “Nothing comes easy, and we have to fight for everything. The next three games will be a dog fight for us, and we will be ready.”
The Barons will next take to the courts in their away game against Pitt-Bradford on Monday, Feb. 11.