Cold shooting leads to 58-45 setback in Hamilton
Posted: January 21, 2009
HAMILTON, N.Y. – Lehigh struggled mightily with its shooting on Wednesday evening and in the end it cost the Mountain Hawks as they fell to Colgate 58-45 at Cotterell Court. Lehigh shot only 29-percent from the floor, which included a 1-of-17 showing from three-point range as the Brown and White fell for the first time under head coach Brett Reed when holding the opposition under 60 points. Junior Dave Buchberger scored a team-high 13 points for Lehigh, while classmate Zahir Carrington scored 11, as the Mountain Hawks fall to 11-7 overall and 1-3 in Patriot League play following the loss. Mike Venezia hit on 7-of-12 shots for a game-high 20 points as Colgate ups its record to 6-11 overall and 2-2 in the league.
Head coach Brett Reed offered his thoughts on the game afterwards. “We struggled mightily on offense tonight. There were a lot of good shots out there that we missed, but at the same token, that’s Patriot League basketball with lots of tough defense, the opponent doing a solid job of scouting you, and we need to be able to step up and make those shots.”
Reed then commented on Lehigh’s upcoming game with archrival Lafayette. “We’re on the road, they’re going to be fired up and we need to get our heads on straight. We need to figure out our consistency and play with the type of poise that comes during those critical situations.”
Junior Marquis Hall finished with nine points on the evening, leaving him five points short of the 1,000-point plateau for his career. Hall handed out two of Lehigh’s four assists, while Carrington ripped down a team-best nine boards. The one area where the Mountain Hawks were solid was at the foul line where they sank 12 of their 15 attempts.
Joining Venezia in double figures for Colgate was Willie Morse, who hit for 10 points, while senior Alex Woodhouse pulled down a game-high 15 rebounds. The Raiders dished out nine assists and sank 14-of-20 free throws, but had their issues from the floor just like Lehigh, as the home team connected on just 39-percent of its shots.
Lehigh began the game on a 6-0 run, forcing Colgate to take a timeout as it appeared the Mountain Hawks may run away with the game. However the Raiders maintained their composure and battled back to take a 25-18 lead into halftime, which was aided by an eight-minute scoring drought by Lehigh midway through the first half.
The Mountain Hawks shot just 29-percent from the field in the opening 20 minutes, which included an 0-for-10 showing from three-point range, while Colgate was not much better, hitting on 32-percent of its shots. Hall led Lehigh with six first half tallies to go along with three steals, two rebounds and one assist. Carrington pulled down six of Lehigh’s 20 rebounds, while freshman John Adams totaled four in the first half. The Mountain Hawks were uncharacteristically careless with the ball turning it over ten times and went to the free throw line just twice.
Colgate was led on offense by Venezia’s nine points on four-of-seven shooting, while Woodhouse ripped down eight boards. The Raiders committed seven turnovers and shot four free throws, sinking each of their attempts.
A Woodhouse dunk off a nice feed by Ben Jonson gave the Raiders a nine-point cushion at the 16:53 mark, but Lehigh answered with seven of the next 11 points to pull within six at the 12:48 mark. Unfortunately that was as close as the Mountain Hawks would get, as Colgate opened up a ten-point advantage when Morse sank a jumper with 11:24 on the clock, and Woodhouse made one-of-two free throws at the 6:14 mark to again give the home team a double digit advantage.
Lehigh closed to within six with 4:56 on the clock when Buchberger sank a pair at the line, but Morse drilled a three-pointer at the end of the shot clock on the other end to make the score 47-38 with just over four minutes to play, which all but sealed the win for Colgate.
Lehigh will be back in action on Saturday afternoon when the Mountain Hawks travel to Easton to take on archrival Lafayette at Kirby Sports Center. Tip-off is set for 1:00 and all of the action will be broadcast live on ESPN Radio 1230 and 1320 AM as well as Lehighsports.com with veteran Matt Kerr and Lehigh Hall of Famer Greg Falkenbach ’72 calling the action. Pre-game coverage gets underway at 12:30.
Mountain Hawks Basketball Extra with Matt Kerr