Knight shines as Lehigh tops Bucknell at Stabler
Posted: February 6, 2005
Bethlehem, PA – Junior Joe Knight connected on a three-pointer from the left wing as time expired to give Lehigh a 57-54 win over Bucknell Sunday afternoon at Stabler Arena. Knight led all scorers with 24 points as the Mountain Hawks won their second straight game improving to 12-10, 6-3 in the Patriot League, while Bucknell falls to 15-7, 6-3 in the league.
The Mountain Hawks started the first half slowly as the Bison were able to build a 20-7 lead eight minutes into the contest. Lehigh would battle back, despite shooting just 29 percent from the field. The Brown and White did their damage from the free throw line, shooting 13 or 16 from the stripe in the opening half. In the final seconds of the half Knight converted a steal and a lay-up to give Lehigh a 30-29 lead at the half. Knight led all scorers with 13 points while Jose Olivero chipped in nine.
Bucknell would re-take the lead after the break and but never built its lead bigger than four points. James Anderson hit a pair of free throws with 6:30 remaining to vault Lehigh into the lead. The Mountain Hawks would build their lead to five before the Bison mounted a late run. A pair of Darren Mastropaolo free throws tied the game at 54 with just seven seconds remaining. From there Knight took the inbounds pass, drove the length of the court and buried a three-pointer as the buzzer sounded to propel the Mountain Hawks to victory.
“Joe had something to prove this weekend,” said coach Billy Taylor after the game. “He wanted to go out there and prove he was an elite player.”
Knight finished with 24, shooting just 6 of 15 from the field, but connecting on a perfect 10 of 10 from the charity stripe. In the second half he became the 25th Lehigh player to reach the 1,000 point plateau. Knight also added five rebounds and four assists. The Mountain Hawks got nine points apiece from senior Nick Monserez and sophomore Jose Olivero as well as a solid six point six rebound effort from junior James Anderson.
“We got a tremendous team effort and had contributions from a lot of different players and you have to give Joe credit for stepping up and making a play at the end,” Taylor said.
Abe Badmus led Bucknell with 15 points. Kevin Bettencourt added 12 points and Charles Lee 10 points and eight boards for the Bison.
The Mountain Hawks finish their four game home stand with a 3-1 record. They will return to the court on Friday night against Army. Tip off set for 7:00 from Christl Arena in West Point. The game will be broadcast in the Lehigh Valley on ESPN Radio 1230 and 1320 as well as online at lehighsports.com.