Royals Out-Last Moravian In High-Scoring Battle, 105-100

Josh Good did a bit of everything and was the only player for either team to chart at least one point, rebound, assist, steal and block. (photo by Scott Eyre)
Josh Good did a bit of everything and was the only player for either team to chart at least one point, rebound, assist, steal and block. (photo by Scott Eyre)

The Runnin Royals broke the century mark and it was just enough to hold off a talented Moravian College team, earning a 105-100 win. Coupled with Friday's 88-73 over Apprentice, Eastern Mennonite finishes 2-0 at the Don Glick Classic, improving their record to 5-3 on the year.

The basketball men get a break for EMU's final exams before heading to Frederick, Md., next weekend. The Runnin Royals will play Stockton on Saturday, followed by host Hood College Sunday afternoon at the Rotary of Frederick Holiday Classic.

The matchup with high-powered Moravian (7-2) lived up the hype. Both teams favor up-tempo play and shoot an above-average amount of three pointers. The Royals took in an 83.9 scoring clip, while Moravian was even better at 87.5. It was only fitting that both hit triple figures.

In the end, Eastern Mennonite did the little things to earn the win, forging a +8 turnover margin combined with a 16-2 edge in second chance points. The Royals trailed for all of 12 seconds early in the game, and led by as many as 21 points at 97-76 with 5:24 to play. Not surprisingly, the Greyhounds made a furious dash to the finish line with a 24-8 surge, before running out of time.

The first half set the tone where the men used a 19-6 jab over a span of just 3:12 to turn a 9-9 tie into a 28-15 cushion. EMU held the same margin at halftime, 58-45.

The entertaining second half was patterned by Moravian trimming the margin into single digits before the Runnin Royals would bump it back up. Back-to-back steals triggered a 7-0 spurt to push the lead to 89-69 with 8:34 remaining.

The defense was again key minutes later to provide the biggest lead of the night. With the second unit on the floor, Josh Good (Luray, Va./Luray) picked out a steal before Travis Clower (Romney, W.V./Hampshire) found Kendall Hawkins (Charlottesville, Va./Albemarle) for a transition lay-up, building the 97-76 margin.

The Greyhounds made their final run, but Khalil Davis (Harrisonburg, Va./Spotswood) sunk enough free throws over the final minute to keep Moravian at bay.

Both teams shot better than 51%, combining to hit 72-of-134 from the floor for 53.7%. EMU was 10-22 from three-point range while the Greyhounds were 13-29. Of the combined 26 players who stepped on the floor, 25 scored.

The Royals had 12 steals, forcing 21 turnovers. They also had 10 offensive rebounds, including nine in the first half.

Maleke Jones (Charles Town, W.V./Washington) and Jerome Jones (Charles Town, W.V./Washington) led an incredibly balanced attack. Maleke Jones charted 16 points with three steals. Jerome Jones also scored 16, adding team highs of eight rebounds and four assists.

RaShawn Latimer (Warrenton, Va./Kettle Run) put in 14 points and Davis finished with 13. Clower showed a versatile game and scored 10 for the second straight day. Chad Simmons (Williamsburg, Va./Bruton) was good for nine points and five rebounds.

Moravian's Brandon McGuire was as good as advertised, as the All-Landmark Conference forward led all players with 35 points and nine rebounds. Jimmy Murray chipped in 16 points off the bench, but no other Greyhound scored more than eight.