Shenandoah opens with win over John Jay

shenandoah u logoThe Shenandoah University men’s basketball team officially opened up its 2015-16 season Sunday afternoon with an 85-70 non-league victory over John Jay (N.Y.).

The Hornets (1-0) found themselves down 13 points midway through the first, but turned it on to pull past John Jay (0-1).

Trailing 26-13 following an Essien Epps 3-pointer with 8:57 remaining, Shenandoah reeled off a 21-10 run to complete the half and enter the break down just two, 36-34.

The two teams split the initial 12 points of the second half before the hosts asserted control beginning at the16:05 mark.

Junior Malcolm Clark tied the game with a pair of free throws, which also ignited an 18-6 run over the next 6:04that put SU up 58-48 with 10:01 left.

Junior Aaron Patterson, who had a team-high 21 points, had two of his five 3-pointers along with a layup during this spurt.

Epps, who had a game-high 30 points, ended the run with a 3-pointer at 9:45, but the damage was done.

Following another Epps 3-pointer, this one at 8:27, Shenandoah scored 18 of the game’s next 20 points to extend its lead out to 25 with 3:16 left.

Hornets head coach Rob Pryor then emptied his bench, with eight players seeing their initial action of the contest in the waning moments.

In addition to Patterson’s 21, Clark and Gabriel Gonzalez 14 each, Antwan Pittman 11 and Kelsey Thomas 10 with nine rebounds.

SU, which was outrebounded 26-20 in the first, ended the game with a 42-40 advantage on the glass.

The Hornets shot a sizzling 58 percent (21 of 36) in the second stanza.

Shenandoah is back in action Tuesday night at 8 in a non-league home game versus Penn College.

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