Emmitsburg, Md. (February 14, 2019)--A big second half propelled Mount St. Mary's to a 76-62 win over Robert Morris on Thursday night at Knott Arena. Freshman Vado Morse paced the Mount with 21 points while Jalen Gibbs added 14 points and eight rebounds in the win. The Mountaineers outscored Robert Morris, 45-24, in the second half to secure their second consecutive victory.
Trailing 41-33 early in the second half, the Mountaineers used a 10-to-2 run to even the score. Morse scored the first six points of the run, and a Dee Barnes four-point play with 13:40 left in the half tied the score at 43-43. The teams exchanged the lead for the next few minutes, with Robert Morris pulling ahead, 51-50, on a Josh Williams three-pointer with 10:23 remaining in the second half. The Mount (7-19, 4-9 NEC) then rattled off a 10-0 run to take the lead for good. Omar Habwe started the run with a four-point play of his own to put the Mountaineers ahead, 54-51. After a turnover, Gibbs scored on a baseline drive to put the Mount up by five. Damian Chong Qui forced a turnover on the inbounds pass, and fed Habwe for a thunderous dunk that pushed the advantage to 58-51 and forced the Colonials to call timeout. After a miss by Robert Morris, Gibbs capped the run with a transition basket on a feed from Chong Qui that extended the lead to 60-51 with 9:05 on the clock. After Robert Morris cut it to 65-55 with 4:47 left on a Charles Bain drive, Gibbs converted a traditional three-point play and Morse a jumper to put the Mount ahead 70-55 with 3:10 remaining. From there, the Mount was able to close out the victory.
Morse went 5-of-8 from the field and 10-of-12 at the foul line for his 21 points while adding four assists, four rebounds and a pair of steals in the victory. Gibbs was 6-of-10 from the field for his 14 points while also collecting a team-high eight boards. Dee Barnes went 4-for-5 from the field for 12 points while Habwe finished with nine points, four boards ad a pair of steals in the game. Chong Qui added seven points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals for the Mount, who pulled within one game of the final Northeast Conference playoff spot. Josh Williams led Robert Morris (13-13, 8-5 NEC) with 16 points while Jon Williams chipped in 14 points. Bain added nine points and a game-high nine rebounds in the loss.
The Mountaineers shot 51.1 percent from the floor in the victory and were 24-of-32 (.750) at the foul line. The Mount also held a 31-27 edge on the boards while forcing Robert Morris into 12 second-half turnovers. Robert Morris shot 39.6 percent in the game while hitting 10-of-24 (.417) from beyond the three-point arc.
In the opening half, Robert Morris raced to an early 10-2 lead, and held a 38-27 advantage after a Bain three-pointer with 1:37 left in the half. The Mount scored the final four points on the first half on a Barnes lay-up and a pair of Chong Qui free throws to make it 38-31 at the break.
The Mount hosts Wagner on Saturday, February 16, at 4:00 p.m. at Knott Arena.