I'm assuming that only diehard Gannon fans read this site, so you already know that the Knights took down PSAC East-leading Kutztown Wednesday night at the Hammermill Center, 76-61. But if you didn't know the final outcome and I shared only these stats from the game, tell me if you thought the Knights got a W or an L:
* Gannon gave up a 10-0 run to open the game
* Late in the first half, with four starters on the bench with foul trouble, Gannon gave up another 10-0 run
* KU guard Tynell Fortune lit up the Knights for 25 points, 10 above his average
* KU small forward Tyler Brooks crossed over his defender repeatedly, leading to 15 points
* Gannon's Raphell Thomas-Edwards played only half the game and was limited by a heavily bandaged right hand
* Starting point guard Adam Holm-Weber was scoreless on the evening
* A'Darius Porter was 2-for-7 from the field, having a couple of his shots blocked and another miss so far wide left, I thought I was watching a Florida State/Miami football game on ESPN Classic
you believe that's part of the recipe for a 15-point victory? The game
was tight until the final minutes when Gannon caught fire from the field
and broke open a very entertaining game.
in the game was simply Gannon's defensive intensity in the second half.
In the opening period, Kutztown hit 50% of its field goals and scored
34 points. That's not a ton, but by John Reilly's standards it was too
many. Talking with my brother at halftime, I noted that Kutztown looked
comfortable playing against Gannon's D. They moved the ball side-to-side,
beat guys off the dribble, and hit shots from a variety of angles. Bob
Dukiet, who imbued his defensive philosophy upon Reilly, absolutely detested when opponents would get comfortable and would let his team know about it if he sensed one iota of comfort.
Gannon frustrated Kutztown so badly, two of their players nearly came to blows during a time out. Fortune and Anthony Selby had to be separated by their coaches after exchanging words at close range. Coach Bernie Driscoll spent the majority of the full timeout calming down Selby away from the huddle before allowing him to sit on the bench with his teammates.
wasn't surprised to read in the paper today Girbran Smith's quote: "We
had a bad start, but coach gave us a good talk and we focused in during
the second half." In the first 18 minutes of the second half, Gannon had
KU ballhandlers on their heels and allowed only 19 points. I couldn't
believe when I looked at the scoreboard with 2:30 to go and Gannon was
Let's hope we all have the same feeling Saturday night vs. Edinboro.
Other observations related to the Golden Knights and Golden Bears:
I heard this great story after the game. One of the officials arrived
at the Hammermill right after tip-off because he was behind that 18-car
pileup on I-80 Wednesday. To make sure he didn't miss any more of the
game than he had to, the official pulled up in front of the Hammermill,
gave his keys to a ticket taker, and asked her to park his vehicle. Officials get a lot of boos, but this gentleman deserves credit for his commitment to his profession.
Tynell Fortune had a monster game -- 25 points on 8-of-13 shooting --
but his night could have been bigger. First, the 88% foul shooter
inexplicably missed 5 free throws. Second, coach Driscoll subbed
out Fortune with just under 4 minutes to play, and he rotted on the
bench as Gannon pulled away. That move made no sense to me.
I know this is a little thing, but little things are important. Tony
Boykins played only 9 minutes which is typical for the junior transfer.
I'm sure if you asked him, he'd feel he should play more. But the guy
isn't sulking or playing selfishly. On one of his first possessions of
the game, he swung the ball to Adam Holm-Weber on the right wing, set a
back screen for Smith, and pointed to his back with his right thumb,
imploring Holm-Weber to chuck a skip pass to Smith. That's what happened
and Smith drained the wide open three.
* I'm an old man now, so I usually don't enjoy when teammates script
fancy pre-game handshakes. But seeing Brit Thomas-Edwards drop to one
knee and be knighted by Rich Austin during the introductions made me
laugh. Kudos for creativity.