Emmitsburg, Md. (January 3, 2013)--Mount St. Mary's lost its Northeast Conference opener, 72-65, to visiting Fairleigh Dickinson on Thursday night at Knott Arena. Junior Kristijan Krajina paced the Mount by matching his career high with 16 points.
Fairleigh Dickinson (6-7, 1-0 NEC) pushed out to an early 12-8 lead 3:18 into the game behind the scoring of guard Melquan Bolding, who scored all 12 points in the run. The Knights, who led the entire game, later used a 17-to-4 spurt to take a 32-16 lead with 6:39 left in the opening half. Fairleigh Dickinson was able to maintain that advantage, going to the locker room leading 39-22.
The Knights shot 69.6 percent (16-of-23) from the field in the opening half while holding the Mount to 34.4 percent (11-of-32), including 0-of-10 from three-point range.
The Mount came out strong in the second half, using an 8-0 to cut the deficit to eight points, 55-47, with 5:51 left in the game. Julian Norfleet, Krajina, Shivaughn Wiggins and Taylor Danaher each had buckets in the spurt.
FDU answered with an 8-2 run of its own to push the lead back to 12. The Mount did not go down without a fight, hitting three three-pointers in a span of 43 seconds, the final one from Rashad Whack that made the score 68-63 with 33 seconds left in the game. FDU, however, was able to close out the win by going 4-for-4 at the line in the final seconds.
The Mount finished the game 30-of-72 (.417) from the field, but was just 4-of-28 (.143) from beyond the three-point arc. Fairleigh Dickinson finished shooting 55.3 percent. The Mount committed a season-low four turnovers, but was their pressure defense was on able to force FDU into just 13 in the contest.
Krajina was 8-for-10 from the field for his team-high 16 points. The 6-9 forward is now shooting a Northeast Conference leading 70.6 percent from the field this season. It was his fourth double-figure scoring game of the year.
Whack finished with 10 points and six rebounds while Danaher and Raven Barber each added eight points in the loss.
Bolding finished with a game-high 19 points while adding seven rebounds in the win. Kinu Rochford added a double-double of 12 points and 10 boards with Lonnie Robinson tallying 10 points for the Knights.
The Mount is back in action on Saturday, January 5, when Monmouth visits Knott Arena for a 7:00 p.m. game.
Game Notes: FDU snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Mount with the win...The Mount is now 3-1 at home this year...With tonight's loss, Mount St. Mary's is 10-14 all-time in NEC openers, having lost four of their past five.