Point Park men held to season-low 69 in loss, Heatherington surpasses 1,000 points
Jan. 21, 2012
ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- The Point Park University men's basketball team, which entered the day leading NAIA Division II in scoring at 92.7 ppg, was held to a season-low 69 points in a 79-69 loss to American Mideast Conference foe Roberts Wesleyan on Saturday afternoon.
And Point Park (9-8, 2-3 AMC) needed to scramble to get to that point total considering it was trailing Roberts Wesleyan (6-13, 2-2 AMC) by more than 20 points, 62-40, with 11:36 to go.
The Pioneers put together a comeback, fueled by a 27-7 run, to get within 69-67 with 2:20 to go. The homestanding Raiders then padded their lead to 75-69 with 53 seconds left aided by a couple of clutch jumpers by forward Alif Bland.
Still down 75-69 with under 30 seconds to play, Point Park thought it had a good chance to cut the lead in half as T.J. Heatherington's layup fell through as he was fouled. But instead, Heatherington was called for a controversial traveling violation, one that drew a pair of technicals from the Point Park bench.
Mike Stone made all four technical free throws to make the final score a 10-point game, 79-69.
Heatherington, a 5-10 junior guard from McKeesport, Pa., got his average of 27 points, which leads NAIA Division II. Heatherington entered the game needing 19 points for 1,000 in his career, and he now has 1,008. He is the 17th player in school history to reach the milestone.
Heatherington was 5 of 12 from the field and 15 of 17 from the foul line. He made 10 of 12 free throws and had 18 points the second half to help Point Park make a comeback from its 38-29 deficit at halftime.
Eric Johnson, a 6-2 guard/forward from Uniontown, Pa., continued his strong play with 11 points and 11 rebounds off the bench. He has reached double figures the last three games and has been back just five games after sitting out the first semester.
Robbie Heatherington added 11 points and six rebounds for Point Park, which struggled to 34-percent shooting overall and 22 percent (4 for 18) from long range. The Pioneers did not have their usual touch from the perimeter, which entered the day ranking third in the country in treys per game at 9.8.
Point Park was down early, 6-0, but battled back to go up, 15-12, on a 3-pointer by T.J. Heatherington at the 11:32 mark of the first half. Things stayed close, and Point Park was down, 26-24, five minutes later.
But the Point Park offense limped to the halftime locker room with a season-low 29 points as the Raiders stretched the lead at the break to nine points, 38-29.
And when Roberts Wesleyan opened the second half on a 12-0 run for a 51-29 lead with 16:22 left, it tied for the biggest margin of the day. Point Park was still down, 62-40, with 11:36 left before it started to make a move.
The Pioneers cut the lead down to 68-58 as T.J. Heatherington scored 14 of Point Park's 18 points in that stretch. After some free throws by Josh Pohlot, Asa Braxton and T.J. Heatherington mixed around a deep 3-pointer from Jimmy Taylor, Point Park had cut it to 69-67 with 2:20 to go.
Four Roberts starters reached double figures led by 17 points and nine rebounds from Patrick Downer. Dominique Williams added 16 points while Bland had 15 points, nine rebounds and four blocks. William Kemp-Harris had 13 as did reserve Mike Stone, who played 30 minutes.
The Raiders shot 38 percent from the field and 27 percent (6 of 22) from long range, but they were able to build the lead with advantages in other areas. Roberts held 10-point edges in points off turnoveres (25-15), points in the paint (28-18) and second-chance points (21-11).
Point Park was credited with just three assists on its 20 baskets and also had 16 turnovers. Roberts had 10 assists and 11 turnovers on 29 hoops.
Point Park's struggles versus Roberts Wesleyan continued. It was the Pioneers' fifth loss in a row to the Raiders overall and their fifth loss in a row to them in Rochester, N.Y.
Point Park is off until it hosts Daemen next Saturday, Jan. 28. Game time at CCAC-South Gym is 5:30 p.m. Every Pioneers game will air live on internet radio via WPPJ-AM 670 and the MSA Sports Network.
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