Rochester, NY – The D'Youville men's basketball team tipped off their second tournament of the season with a loss to the host Rochester Institute of Technology Tigers Friday evening by the score of 98-82.
The Spartans were out to an early 6-5 lead after 4 points coming from freshman Jake Socha (Tonawanda, NY/Niagara Catholic) with just under 3 minutes gone by in the first half. RIT took over the lead from D'Youville but Nate Sweetman (Johnstown, NY/Johnstown) hit a three-pointer to retake the lead. Sophomore Zach Blask (Portville, NY/Portville) got in on the scoring action but the Tigers took over the lead 22-19 with 9:40 remaining in the first half.
RIT extended their lead as the half progressed, holding a 9 point lead with 6:13 remaining in the half. The Tigers built on their lead and it grew to 15 points as time ran out in the first half with RIT leading D'Youville 45-30.
Not long after the second half began, RIT once again went on the offensive. The Tigers opened up a 22 points lead just over two and a half minutes into the second half. D'Youville would slowly chip away at the lead with the help of 2 Blask three-pointers. With 3:31 remaining in the game, the Spartans got within 11 points of the RIT lead, but couldn't complete the comeback as the Tigers would win the game 98-82.
"An 8-0 run at the end of the first half turned a 7 point game into a 15 point game," said Head Coach Earl Schunk.
"We battled hard to get back but never quite got there," Schunk added.
For the third consecutive game, Marcus Clarke (Olean, NY/Archbishop Walsh Academy) led the team in scoring. His 24 points were a season high along with his 7 assists, also a team high. Zach Blask had another strong game to begin the season, scoring 18 points and 6 assists, both second highest on the team.
Off the bench, Nate Sweetman added 14 points and a team high 6 rebounds. Both Jake Socha and Juan Miguel Rosales (Guatemala City, Guatemala/Village School) each added 8 points with Steve Kunelius (Oswego, NY/Oswego) adding 5 rebounds.
After the near comeback, Schunk has already set his sights on tomorrow's game.
"These games are great experience for our young guys, we look forward to tomorrow."
The men will take on Keuka at 1pm at RIT in the tournament's consolation game.