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December 10, 2009

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CHC tumbles to Kutztown and West Chester

In last Wednesday’s game at CHC, Larz Jeter helped the Griffins keep pace with Kutztown in the early going.

Contrary to the recent success experienced by traders in precious metals, the men’s basketball team at Chestnut Hill College did not fare well in the gold market last week.

In home games on Wednesday and Saturday, the Griffins lost to both the Golden Bears of Kutztown University and to the Golden Rams of West Chester. With these setbacks against long-established Division II rivals, CHC dropped below the .500 mark on the season, at 3-4.

Kutztown arrived in Chestnut Hill on Wednesday ranked 12th in the nation among D-II teams, but the Golden Bears found themselves down by a dozen six-and-a-half minutes into the game as offense from Ryan Cook and Larz Jeter powered the Griffins to a 19-7 lead.

Kutztown recovered to secure a 44-37 lead at the half, then went on to win, 92-77. Freshman guard Ed DiRugeris came on to lead Chestnut Hill in scoring with 18 points, while Cook and Jeter finished with 16 and 14, respectively.

While West Chester attained a 7-0 record with their victory here on Saturday, the Golden Rams were not as highly regarded as Kutztown, which made CHC’s resounding 79-49 loss particularly disturbing.

The scoring proceeded at a leisurely pace for the first five minutes or so, with West Chester slowly building a lead. When the count reached 13-7, Griffins coach Jesse Balcer called timeout. As play resumed, a brief Chestnut Hill rally closed the gap to one point, 13-12, then the Golden Rams opened up with the long-distance artillery. Five three-pointers in the final seven minutes of the period helped the visitors drive their lead close to 20 points by halftime, when the tally was 41-22.

At the intermission, a glance out the window on this cold December afternoon revealed that the rain that had been falling was changing over to snow. While the weather outside was frightful, the Griffins inside were far from delightful. As the second half got underway, the lead hovered around 20 points for a spell, then a 9-0 spurt put the Rams up by a full 30 points (64-34) with 9:53 remaining in the game.

It didn’t show signs of stopping as the visitors’ shots kept dropping. They earned extra offensive opportunities by snatching the ball from the Griffins’ guards and also by winning the battle on the boards (26-18 in the second half after a 14-14 stalemate in the first period).

Off of an inbounds pass with just over four minutes left in the game, West Chester’s Tim Flecken flung a three-point shot through the hoop, and the Rams’ lead reached its apex at 41 points (77-36). As West Chester eased into cruising mode, the Griffins were able to tidy up their stats a little bit down the stretch, finishing with a slightly more respectable 30-point deficit.

West Chester’s offense was paced by three players in double-digits; Ralph Hegamin (20 points), Harley Williamson (12) and Isaiah Twine (11). Greg Maugle, a junior forward out of Plymouth Whitemarsh High School, contributed five points and six rebounds to the winning cause. All of CHC’s scorers finished up in single figures. DeRugeris accumulated eight points while Mike Perry and Andre Rivers each had seven for the Griffins.

 




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