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Men's Basketball Falls at McDaniel, 77-69

Michael Wiper
Michael Wiper

WESTMINSTER, Md. – McDaniel College snapped a four-game losing streak to the Haverford College men's basketball team as the Green Terror picked up a 77-69 Centennial Conference win on Sunday. Haverford's loss marked the first time all season that the Fords (11-4, 6-2 CC) have dropped back-to-back contests.

Three different Fords finished in double figures as Joe Wujciak led the way with 15 points. Jesse Turkson recorded his fourth double-double in five games with 14 points and 10 rebounds, while Nate Torres added 10 points. However, that was not enough to overcome a career-high 32 points off the bench from McDaniel's Caleb Johnson as the Green Terror shot 58.7% from the field in the contest.

The opening part of the first half was a back-and-forth affair as the teams traded the lead nine times and were tied on five other occasions. Haverford started the game by making eight of its first 16 attempts from the field and was up 17-14 after Jonathan Lang finished a layup off of the pass from Wujciak.

Nevertheless, the hot start did not continue for the Fords as the Green Terror defense limited Haverford to just three field goals the rest of the half. On the other hand, the hosts were shooting 53.8% inside their friendly confines at the break. Haverford was able to force seven Green Terror turnovers in the first half to keep the game close while the offense attempted to regain its rhythm. Unfortunately, the hosts closed the opening period on a 7-0 run following a three-pointer from Joe Hartman and led 37-26 after the first half.

Looking to climb back into the contest during the second half, the Fords went to Turkson as the reigning Centennial Conference Player of the Week scored the first seven points of the period on 3-for-3 shooting in the early minutes. In the end, the Green Terror were even better from the field in the second half as they shot 65% and made 26 trips to the free throw line over the final 20 minutes.

McDaniel led by as many as 15 points, 69-54, with 2:23 to play before the Fords made one final offensive push and scored 11 points in just over a minute to cut the lead to eight. Despite shooting just 50% at the line for the game, McDaniel made just enough down the stretch to keep the Fords from coming any closer after Michael Wiper's layup made the game a seven-point difference in the final minute.

Men's basketball will look to get back on the winning track this coming week with a pair of home contests. The Fords are 8-0 inside Gooding Arena this season and will look to extend that mark this coming Wednesday, January 22 against Franklin & Marshall. The Fords and Diplomats will tip at 8 p.m. after the women's game. Haverford defeated F&M on the road by an 82-66 score in early December. Halftime of Wednesday's men's game will also be Haverford's Senior Student-Athlete Blanket Ceremony.