The Franciscan University of Steubenville men’s basketball team won 93-78 against the Grove City College Wolverines at their Presidents’ Athletic Conference opening game Wednesday at 7 p.m.
The Barons secured the first points of the game through an early layup following a fastbreak by sophomore guard Josh Zimmerman. Graduate student guard Sean Hickey followed with a 3-pointer.
The two teams vied for points, aided by a jump shot and a free throw by sophomore guard Tristan McDannell. Junior guard Christian Nguyen contributed his own jump shot and free throw with 7:54 left.
With Nguyen’s successful shots, the Barons reached a 33-16 lead. The Wolverines upped their scoring toward the half’s end. A streak of points led the Barons to call a 30-second timeout.
The Barons followed the timeout with a strong effort, with a 3-pointer by senior guard Justin Mack. McDannell also followed with a couple of successful free throws.
Several streaks of points were achieved by the Wolverines, closing the point gap between the two teams. The half closed with the Barons leading 46-37 after a fastbreak 3-pointer by sophomore forward Nicholas Allienello.
Allienello ended the first half with a 3-pointer and began the second half with a 3-pointer. A defensive rebound by Mack with 11:56 left led to another 3-pointer by Allienello assisted by Nguyen.
A battle of jump shots ensued for the rest of the half, with the Wolverines temporarily closing in on the Barons within an 11-point gap. However, a couple of free throws by McDannell cemented the Barons’ victory at the end of the second and final half.
Head Coach Joe Wallace said, “(Tonight) was a big-time program win in all facets. Every player down the roster, and all the coaches were in sync. The focus and preparation showed.”
The Barons’ next home game was Saturday at 2:30 p.m. against the Hilbert College Hawks in the Finnegan Fieldhouse.