WASHINGTON - An inspired and emotional Gallaudet University men's basketball team took to Padden Court here Wednesday night in the Field House. The Bison faught hard but fell short to Penn St.-Abington, 79-75, in a North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) contest.
Gallaudet (2-13, 2-5 NEAC) led for half of the game that saw nine lead changes and 12 ties. The Bison took a 35-33 lead into halftime and held their largest lead (eight points) five minutes into the second half.
Penn St.-Abington (8-7, 5-1 NEAC) continued to chip away at the Gallaudet lead and regained it at the 8:21 mark in the second half. The game went back-and-forth until the end. GU had a chance to tie the game in the waning seconds when it was down three points, 76-73, but the Bison missed a layup down in the post. The visitors added a few additional points at the free throw line to secure its fifth conference win this season.
Prior to the start of the game the Gallaudet Athletics Department and the men's basketball program paid tribute to the late John C. Perry, who passed Tuesday. Perry, 47, was a 15-year assistant coach with the Bison men's basketball program.
Freshman guard Corey Smith (Miami, Fla.) led all Gallaudet scorers with 24 points. Junior center Steve Valencia-Biskupiak (Riverside, Calif.) followed with 19 points, six rebounds and two blocks. Sophomore guard Preston Kelly (Fishers, Ind.) added 13 points. The duo of junior Noah Valencia (Riverside, Calif.) and Trace Martin (Single Springs, Calif.) were held to five and eight points, respectively.
The Nittany Lions had three players in double figures led by guard Pernell Ghee's 28-point game.
- Senior forward Jamal Garner (Jacksonville, Ill.) added six points, four rebounds and three steals
- GU scored 23 points off 29 turnovers
- Both teams scored 38 points in the paint, ironcially the same thing happened in the women's game
- Penn St.-Abington swept the season series
- The Nittany Lions defeated the Bison, 89-86, back on Nov. 28
Gallaudet will next host Penn College (2-14, 1-6 NEAC). The game is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 19, at 4 p.m. Stay tuned to www.gallaudetathletics.com for any schedule changes due to weather, that may impact this contest.