Written for your enjoyment by: RAFF
Another game where the Mount looked like two different teams in each half. Thankfully for the Mount they only needed 20 minutes of quality basketball to dispatch of Wagner for the second time in 48 hours, 66-50 at the Spiro Center in Staten Island.
The Mount trailed 27-19 at the half, but Jeremy Goode took over in the second half scoring 14 of his 16 after the break and keying the run for the Mount. The win leaves the Mount in a three-way sixth place tie with Central Connecticut State and Monmouth for the final three playoff spots in the NEC. And if my quick figuring is right the Mount is now only one game out of third place as well.
Raven Barber had another strong performance for the Mount inside. The freshman post player continues to show an ability to score around the basket and we catch more and more of his offensive game as he becomes more and more a part of things after becoming eligible at midseason.
In addition, Will Holland and Pierre Brown gave the Mount key minutes off the bench. Holland has shot the ball well off the bench most of the season - and his knee injury forced him to miss much of that nine game losing streak.
Once again, the Mount played solid defense. And I like that very much. But it wasn't the defense that won the game -- and it hasn't been the defense that has lost any of the games this year. It was an offense that got a few things in tranisition (ironically the Mount tied the game on a Goode steal and layin of Czesky), a couple more jumpers going down, and Goode getting into the lane creating things for himself and his teammates.
The Mount plays a pair on the road next week at Monmouth and Fairleigh Dickinson, both of which are ahead of the Mount in the conference race, before returning to Knott Arena for its final four games.
Despite the atrocious stretch in the first half this team is playing better. It needs to keep improving down the stretch - but playing your best basketball late in the season is always the best way in this league.