For fans of a Division II club like Gannon, road games like Saturday's 65-53 win at Clarion are strange to stay in touch with because you can't stay glued to the TV for every play. There's the radio broadcast and live stats, but you get pulled away from them by real life. Around 9:00 p.m. when I went upstairs to tuck my daughter into bed, the Knights were clinging to a three-point lead, 42-39, with just under 8 minutes to play. By the time I came downstairs to my tablet and refreshed the live stats, the Knights were in command by 10, 55-45, with just over 4 minutes to play and coasted the rest of the way to the 12-point victory.
I was saying "good night" to my daughter, Adam Blazek was saying
"lights out" to the Golden Eagles. The super sophomore keyed Gannon's
streak that broke the game open. Blazek had a hand (pun intended) in all of Gannon's 13
points during that stretch:
7:52 Blazek field goal, GU 44-39
7:25 Blazek layup and free throw, GU 47-39
6:07 Macias three off a Blazek assist (after a Clarion three), GU 50-42
5:34 Blazek three, GU 53-42
4:19 Blazek layup (after a Clarion three), GU 55-45
32 minutes into the game, Blazek had posted a pedestrian 4 points. But
during that 3 1/2 minute blitz, he accounted for 10 points and the
Knights sealed their 12th win in 13 games, their 7th win in 8 road
With a record of 16-3 overall and 10-3 in the
PSAC, Gannon is guaranteed to post its best record in four seasons --
14-12 (12-10) last year, 15-11 (6-8) in 2010-11, and 13-15 (8-6) in
2009-10. Would you have predicted that before the season? Would you have
picked an .842 winning percentage after Blazek broke his hand in
Gannon's victory sets up the PSAC Game of the
Week Wednesday night at Slippery Rock. Both teams are tied for second
place in the West with 10-3 marks after SRU stumbled this afternoon at Edinboro, 62-59.
The Rock is reeling after blowing a 54-43 lead late at the Boro despite EUP missing big man Bryan Theriot once again. The
Knights were nearly in a three-way tie for first after this evening's
PSAC action. Indiana held on for a 57-54 home win vs. Mercyhurst, nearly losing an 18-point second half lead to the Lakers.
line between the men and the boys in the conference is becoming
clearer. IUP, Gannon, and Slippery Rock rule the West. Edinboro and
Mercyhurst, each 7-6, are three games behind third place while also-rans
Cal (6-7), Clarion (3-10) and Lock Haven (3-10) will fight for the
final playoff spot. In the East, Stroud (12-1) West Chester (10-3), and
Millersville (9-4) are feasting. Cheyney is three games back at 6-7, but
the Wolves are ineligible for the league playoffs due to a self-imposed probation.
So three of these pathetic teams will make the PSAC playoffs:
Bloomsburg (3-10), Mansfield (3-10), Kutztown (2-11), and Shippensburg
Final note: If you haven't seen this video featuring Darrell Blanton's dunks from this season, check it out right now. He's a rare combination of intense, athletic, and consistent in his performances. And it's just plain fun to watch someone nearly break the rim off the backboard.