Lions defeat Franklin to remain one back of the HCAC lead

Lions defeat Franklin to remain one back of the HCAC lead

CINCINNATI, Ohio-- Mount St. Joseph welcomed more than 15 fifteen former players in for their annual alumni game prior to taking on the Grizzlies of Franklin College. The alumni would not be disappointed in the effort given by the Lions, as the team would secure a much needed 80-72 victory. The win kept the Lions hopes alive for a third consecutive HCAC championship. 

The Mount would open the scoring as Holden Hertzel (Cincinanti, OH/ Summit Country Day) drilled a three on the teams opening possession. The score remained tight through the early going and at 14:54 was tied at 8-8. The Lions would go on a 7-0 run over the next few minutes to begin to seperate themselves. They would push their lead to a first half high 13 points with 3:01 to play. And would go into the half with a 10 point cushion. They were lead in the first half by Andrew Finley (Cincinnati, OH/ Walnut Hills) who scored 15 of his game high 26 in the first half. 

The Lions opened the second half on a 6-0 run to push their lead to a game-high 16 points. But this game was far from over. Franklin would answer immediately with a 13-3 run of their own to get themselves back into the game. The Grizzlies would continue to claw back into it climbing all the way back to tie the game at 55 all with 8:26 to play. While Franklin did well to get back into the game, they never led in the contest. The defense stiffened for the Lions over the final few minutes of play and they were able to come away with the 80-72 victory.

The Lions were extremely balanced offensively as the other four starters joined Finley in double figures. Jake Cropper (Georgetown, OH/ Georgetown) chipped in 14, Jordan Henry (Lexington, KY/Bryan Station) and Erik Edwards (Cincinnati, OH. / Roger Bacon) each added 12, and Hertzel added 11.

This win sets the Lions up for a monumental showdown with Heartland Collegiate Athletics Conference leader Hanover, on Wednesday night. The Lions will host the Panthers at the Harrington Center at 7:30 PM.