Men's Basketball's Comeback at Cleveland State Falls Short, 66-60
Cleveland, Ohio – The Youngstown State men's basketball team trailed by as many as nine points in the second half and rallied to take the lead, but could not hang on and dropped a 66-60 decision to Cleveland State on Tuesday evening at the Wolstein Center.
The Penguins, who fall to 13-10 overall and 5-5 in the Horizon League, placed three players in double figures led by freshman Bobby Hain with 15 points off the bench. Senior Blake Allen scored 14 points with three 3-pointers and junior Kamren Belin added 11 points.
Cleveland State improves to 12-12 overall and 4-6 in the league. Devon Long led the Vikings with 23 points on 9-of-11 shooting from the field and five free throws. Sebastian Douglas, Charlie Lee and Junior Lomomba each had 10 points for the Vikings.
After the Vikings jumped out to a nine-point lead, 32-23, at the start of the second half, the Penguins went on a 17-5 run to take a 40-37 lead with 12:14 to go.
After the teams traded 3-pointers to make the scored 35-26, the Penguin rattled off 10 straight on a layup by Damian Eargle, a jumper by Hain, a layup by Belin and another layup by Hain to take a 36-35 lead.
The teams traded the lead eight more times and the Vikings used a 9-0 spurt to erase a one-point deficit, 48-47, and turn it into an eight-point advantage, 55-48, with 3:38 to go.
Belin made a four-point play to cut the lead in half, and Allen made one of two free throws to get within three, 56-53. Hain also hit a jumper a jumper with 2:14 left to keep the deficit at three, 58-55, but the Penguins could not get any closer.
Youngstown State shot 48.3 percent from the field in the second half, but just 46.2 percent from the free-throw line after halftime. For the game, the Penguins missed 11 free throws.
The first half was characterized by runs by both teams, but the Vikings closed out the half on a 17-4 run, and the Penguins scored just four points over the last 10 minutes. Cleveland State led 30-23 at the half.
The Penguins, who shot just 34.8 percent in the first half, also went scoreless for an eight minute span which Cleveland State scored 12 straight points. YSU lead 21-16 before the Cleveland State run. The Vikings shot 44 percent in the first half and out-rebounded the Penguins, 19-12.
The Penguin scored the first six points of the game before the Vikings scored to the next nine to take a 9-6 lead with 13:59 left.
An old-fashioned three-point play by DJ Cole and a 3-pointer Kamren Belin gave the Penguins a six-point lead, 19-13, midway through the half, but they would score just four more points the rest of the half.
A jumper by Bobby Hain with 46 seconds left ended the YSU scoring drought and got the Guins within four, 27-23, but a three-point play by CSU's Devon Long with 11.7 seconds left put the Vikings up seven, 30-23.
The Penguins return home to host Loyola, Thursday, Feb. 7, at 7:45 p.m. at the Beeghly Center.