Buffalo, NY - The D'Youville men's basketball team earned their first win of the season with a convincing 86-79 win over Pitt-Greensburg.
Sophomore guard Marcus Clarke(Olean, NY/Archbishop Walsh) poured in a career-high 34 points to lead all scorers. Clarke was 11-23 from the floor (5-11 from 3-point) and 7-7 from the free-throw line.
Head coach Earl Schunk tweaked the Spartans' starting lineup. Freshman guard Anthony Malone (Erie, PA/Mercyhurst Prep) made his first career start. Nate Sweetman (Johnstown, NY/Johnstown) made his first start of the season and freshman Matt Insley (Wellsville, NY/Wellsville) made his third start of the year. This group joined Gemerek and Julian Reed (Cheektowaga, NY/Union-Endicott) to open the game with a 7-0 run.
It was a lead that would continue to grow. The early advantage swelled to a 12-point lead and the Spartans took an eight point advantage into halftime. Clarke had 16 points in the first-half and Sweetman added 9, part of his season-high 11 points. Sweetman also had 7 rebounds.
The visitors chipped away in the second half and took their first lead of the game at 60-59 with 8:47 to play.
And for a stretch it was a nail-biter. There were three ties and five lead changes. The last lead change came on a Clarke jumper with 2:12 to play that put the Spartans ahead for good. D'Youville would close the game with a 12-4 run to seal the win.
Head coach Earl Schunk after the game: "Today the difference was when we lost the lead we didn't panic. We just kept doing good, smart things, and when the game got close we made plays and pulled away."
The Spartans played with the lead for the first 31:53 of the game, their longest stretch of being ahead this season.
D'Youville will host Mount Aloysius tomorrow (Jan. 12) in the College Center Gym. Start time is at 1:00 p.m.