Alvernia Secures Big Win, 70-63, At Albright

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Reading, Pa. (Jan. 18, 2017) – Marquis Marshall scored a game-high 23 points and added 10 rebounds as Alvernia University (10-7, 4-4) defeated crosstown rival Albright College (7-10, 5-3) by a 70-63 score Wednesday evening in MAC Commonwealth men's basketball action at The Bollman Center.
"That's a real big win for us," said Alvernia head coach Mike Miller, who is now 12-8 in his first 20 games against the Crusaders' main rival.  "If we lose, we're in trouble, but with that win we're right back in it."
Albright freshman Fred Rowles scored four minutes into the second half to tie the game at 39-all, but Alvernia put together a 21-8 run for a 60-47 lead with 7:27 to play.
"Let's give Ship [Alex Shippen] some credit for his defense in the second half on [DeJuan] Smith," said Miller.  "He completely shut him down.  Even when he got his fourth foul we just kept him on him."
Smith carried the Lions through the first half hitting 6-of-8 shots from the floor for a game-high 15 points at the break.  He scored one bucket—on just two shots—over the first 12 minutes of the second half while the Crusaders built their largest lead of the game.
Both teams struggled to change the 60-47 score, combining to miss seven straight shots over a three-minute span.  Albright senior Calvert Gantz ended the drought with a layup with 4:30 to play, and a Rowles free throw cut the Crusaders' lead to 10.
Alvernia was content to start running the clock down on the next possession and got a fortunate, fading 3 from Shippen to push back ahead by 13.  Rowles answered with a jumper and again the Crusaders got a crucial bucket, this time from George Williams as the shot clock went off to set a 65-52 score with 2:54 to play.
Albright got a 3 from Jaylin Calloway, but Alvernia answered with a fast break dunk from Marshall.
A Calloway offensive rebound led to a 3 from Omari Ringgold and the Crusaders turned the ball over twice before a Rowles 3 cut the gap to five points, 68-63 with 26 seconds to go.
Smith had a 3 in the air with 10 seconds to play that would have cut the deficit down to two, but it was long and Williams hit a pair of free throws for the 70-63 final.
Williams finished with his first double-double of the season scoring 20 points to go with a career-high 12 rebounds.  Shippen added 13 points and five boards.
Albright put four players in double figures led by Smith with 19.
Alvernia starts the second cycle through the conference schedule on Saturday at Lebanon Valley.
Alvernia 70, Albright 63