NEW YORK, N.Y. --- The Moravian College men's basketball team had a 15-point lead early in the second half and held off a late charge to defeat host Baruch (N.Y.) College in non-conference game Saturday in New York City.
The Greyhounds won their fourth straight contest to head into a short break for the semester final exams with a 7-1 record.
Junior guard Jimmy Murray tossed in a team-high 22 points to go along with four rebounds and three assists to lead the Blue and Grey while junior forward Oneil Holder had 14 points, a team-high seven rebounds and a pair of assists. Junior guard Nicholas Casazza connected on a trio of three-pointers for nine points while senior guard Matt Cardonne added eight points.
Sophomore guard C.J. Barnes and junior guard Will Brazukas both scored six points with Brazukas dishing out three assists while sophomore guard Elijah Davis added four points and three boards. Sophomore forward Addis Ralph blocked three shots and grabbed four rebounds in the victory while senior forward Khalil Rhett had six rebounds and three assists. Sophomore guard Mike Martino added three points and a pair of rebounds while freshman guard Keith Otto netted two points.
Moravian connected on 26-of-60 field goal attempts, 9-of-26 shots beyond the three-point line and 10-of-14 free throws on the afternoon, and the Hounds also finished with a slim 39-38 edge in rebounds.
The Bearcats opened the scoring but Brazukas would give the Greyhounds an early 4-2 lead. Murray connected on a pair of jumpers as Moravian led 10-7, and Cardonne snapped a 10-10 tie with a three-pointer at the 13:57 mark. After a pair of three-pointers by Murray, a dunk by Davis pushed the Hounds' edge to 21-12 with 11:24 until the intermission.
Casazza and Martino drained three-point shots as Moravian's advantage hit double digits, 29-17, with 7:14 left in the half, and another Casazza three-pointer pushed the lead to 34-21 with 4:03 until the break. Cardonne hit a late trey after an offensive rebound before Baruch connected on the final bucket of the half to send the teams to the locker room with the Greyhounds leading 41-30.
Murray and Davis both scored in the first 30 seconds of the second half as Moravian posted its largest lead of the day at 45-30, and a jumper from Holder had the Blue and Grey up 49-38 with 16:23 remaining. The Bearcats slowly closed the gap before taking a 55-53 lead after four free throws from a Moravian foul and technical foul.
Holder tied the contest at 55-55 with a jumper, and a Murray lay-up would knot the score again at 57-57. The Hounds regained the lead for good, 59-57, on a jumper by Murray with 8:49 remaining. Casazza pushed the edge to 65-59 with a three-pointer at the 6:54 mark, and Rhett had Moravian up 69-61 with just under four minutes to play. Baruch closed within two points twice in the final minute but Brazukas hit a pair of free throws and Murray added a game-sealing lay-up with 13 ticks on the clock.
The Greyhounds have the next nine days off for finals before returning to action on Monday, December 18 when the squad plays Widener University in the Hoops MIA Holiday Shootout at 11:00 a.m. in Miami, Florida.