Bad Three: Gannon's 62-59 win vs. Slippery Rock Wednesday night was a thrill for those in attendance at the Hammermill. Regrettably, I wasn't one of them. Instead, I was on an Air Tran flight from Orlando to Pittsburgh, returning from the HIMSS Conference held this week in Florida. I was following the live stats until takeoff with the score tied at 41. You know how hard it is to watch your favorite team in a close game? Imagine them in a nailbiter with 10 minutes to play, but you can't learn the outcome of the game until 2 hours later.
What made the situation worse is that this was the third home game I've missed this season due to work travel. I think I was in diapers the last year I missed three Gannon home games. Each of the three contests was thriller, too: a 2-point loss to Cal and the OT loss to Mercyhurst. I love close games and I love Gannon basketball. It was like torture to miss out on these contests.
Good Three: Danard Crouch may have been just 1-for-8 from the field against the Rock, but his only field goal was a bigee. With the Knights down three with 47 seconds left, Crouch drained a trey to tie the game -- clutch shot. A year ago, that wouldn't have happened. I recall Gannon's first win of the 2009-10 season, a 40-38 slugfest vs. Northern Kentucky, when Crouch cracked under pressure. With 49 seconds left and the Knights up 2, the then-junior badly missed the front end of a 1-and-1. On Wednesday, the senior earned only his second career start and finished strong. You've got to give this kid credit for his work ethic and persistence. He didn't get a ton of playing time last year, but he didn't join the exodus and quit the team. When John Reilly recruited talented freshman and juco guards this off-season, Crouch didn't pout. Crouch will never be selected for the Gannon sports Hall of Fame, but his efforts these past two seasons will help him earn lots of honors in the game of life.
Hee Hee: Gannon really damaged Slippery Rock's NCAA playoff chances Wednesday. The Rock came in ranked 9th in the region; the top 8 go to the tourney. I can't help but think this is left over karma from the boorish behavior demonstrated by Slippery Rock, their coach Kevin Reynolds, and their football players two years ago. As Bob Dukiet was fond of saying, "Sooner or later ... sooner or later ... God's gonna get you."