One of the many lessons I learned watching Bob Dukiet's Gannon teams play every road game from 1989-1992 is that a great defense is more important than a great offense when playing on the road. Great offensive teams usually don't shoot as well on the road because of the unfamiliar surroundings, but defense is defense no matter where you play.
John Reilly's Knights proved that lesson again today, annihilating host Bloomsburg, 82-45. The Knights led 35-11 at the half, holding the Huskies to 6 points in the first 18 minutes of the contest. Pierre Howard's 11 first-half points matched Bloom's entire output, while Dave Wilson's 10 boards were one short of the Huskies' 11 rebounds in the first stanza.
Kyle Goldcamp didn't play again and didn't make the road trip due to illness. I've been in touch with Gannon SID Dan Teliski, and he's given me all in the info he can. Goldcamp's family is asking that his medical information be kept private.
Jerry Slocum regularly noted that you couldn't celebrate a Thursday win in the GLIAC because the Saturday afternoon game was just over 40 hours away. With the PSAC's Saturday/Sunday schedule, you don't even have time to pat yourself on the back.
I'm thinking Mansfield (7-4), Gannon's opponent on Sunday, must be pretty decent. First, they're 4-0 at home after a 97-86 win over Clarion today. Second, the Mountaineers were competitive in an early-season loss at Division I Binghamton. BU is now a respectable 10-4 this season, with road wins at Rutgers and at Tulane.
Finally, last weekend on the road, Mansfield controlled Edinboro for 23 minutes, holding an 11-point lead early in the second half. An Edinboro 30-10 run over the next 10 1/2 minutes sealed the victory for the talented Scots.
Mansfield is led by 6-foot-6 Yuseff Carr, a New York City post player who averages 17.8 ppg and 7.9 rpg while shooting nearly 60% from the field. The Knights could really use Goldcamp to bother Carr, but instead they'll have to rely on their swarming team defense. As Bloom learned today the hard way, that D can be more than enough to get the job done.