WASHINGTON - The Gallaudet University men's basketball team had a tough task on Saturday evening as the Bison faced nationally ranked Catholic University of America at the Field House. Gallaudet never led No. 15th Catholic but was able to keep the deficit to single digits through the first 15 minutes, before the Cardinals kicked things into gear and flew past the Bison in a 85-60 rout. It was the 118th meeting between the cross-town rivals.
Senior guard Layton Seeber (Champaign, Ill.) led the Bison (4-6) with 20 points, 15 of which came on 5-of-9 shooting from beyond the three-point arc. Senior center Danny Kelly (Strongsville, Ohio) contributed 15 points with team highs in both rebounds (five) and assists (four). Junior forward Orion Palmer (Riverside, Calif.) netted eight points and grabbed four boards before fouling out midway through the second half, while senior guard Jocus Houston (Baton Rouge, La.) led the bench with seven points and five rebounds. However, the Bison endured heavy pressure throughout the night from a staunch defensive effort by the Cardinals (7-1), who forced 27 turnovers with 16 steals and nine blocks in the contest.
Despite holding only a 29-23 lead with 5:19 remaining in the first half, Catholic went on a torrid 17-2 run over the course of the final five minutes to bring their lead to 21 points. Seeber helped the Bison gain some momentum when he nailed a three-point buzzer beater from the corner as time expired to send GU into intermission down 46-28. The second half proved to be more of the same as the Cardinals shot nearly 50 percent from the field on 14-of-29 shooting, sank 4-of-8 three-point shots and converted 7-of-9 free throw attempts.
Catholic was powered by their starting five, all of whom reached double digits in points scored. Sophomore Steve Limberiou had 20 points and seven rebounds, while senior Chris Kearney had 19 points and seven blocks. This was Catholic's 100th victory over the Bison in a rivalry that dates back to 1911.
The Bison will have plenty of time to bounce back as they have two weeks before they take to the hardwood in Lycoming College's Louis Fleming Basinger Tournament on Saturday, Dec. 29, in Williamsport, Pa., where GU faces John Jay at 8 p.m.