Men’s basketball get swept on road trip, drop to 9-11 on the season

Sit one game ahead of fifth placed Ohio Christian, 2.5 games out of playoffs

Written By Mason Strawn, Co-Sports Editor

The men’s basketball team were on the road last week, taking on River State Conference (RSC) rivals Indiana University Southeast on Friday, Jan. 28, and Midway University on Sunday, Jan. 30. The Pioneers would sadly fall to both teams, losing to the red hot Grenadiers 92-78, and just beaten by the Eagles, 72-69, in overtime. The losses drops Point Park to 9-11 on the season, 4-8 in conference play, with their previously planned game on February 1 against Ohio Valley University being labeled as a forfeited victory.

Game one started with a road trip westward to the city of Albany, Indiana, to take on IU Southeast on their hometurf. The Pioneers had to try and compete with a Grenadiers squad that had won three in a row and were on a hot streak in their shooting as of late. That hot streak continued sadly against Point Park, with the Pioneers coming out cold as well. PPU would come up with the first bucket of the game, but would only keep the lead for three minutes before IU Southeast would go on a streak to put them way ahead early, leading by 18 at the half with the score at 27-45. The Grenadiers kept piling it on from there, scoring first and going on a 17-2 run to eventually put them up by as much as 41 points. Although Point Park would go on a late run with a good streak of buckets, the damage had already been done, and the game ended with the score at 72-96.

Senior guard Jesse Calloway led the Pioneers in scoring, putting up 18 while nailing six treys in the losing effort. Senior Guard Sherron Schifino was right behind him with 14 of his own, while also bringing down a game high four offensive rebounds. Point Park would shoot an okay 41% from the floor, while also hitting on a solid 42% from three and bringing in 32 rebounds. The Grenadiers however, simply outperformed the Pioneers, scoring 55% of their shots while also knocking down 53% from beyond the arc, as well as brought down 35 rebounds.

Game two was a much closer match up, with Point Park heading southbound to Midway, Kentucky, and neither team really being able to string together any form of scoring in the first half. Midway would score first, and would try to keep a small 3 point lead throughout the first, but was a constant battle all the way until half time, with only one three pointer being made, and leaving it at 24-25 in favor of Midway. The offense started to appear in the second half though,with Point Park finally going on a run with 13 minutes remaining to put the Pioneers up by 12. Sadly, the Eagles would form their own streak to help bring them back into the game, and would send the game to overtime with a three with five second remaining in the game, leaving it at 64-64. Point Park would take a small early lead into the five-minute overtime, but the Eagles would go on one final push with two minutes remaining to put them ahead for good, ending the contest at 69-72.

Schifino ended the game with a career high 30 points, his first 30 point game in his time at Point Park, while also snatching a team high 9 rebounds. Sophomore guard Nate Van would put up 14 points, and swipe 3 steals in a strong defensive showing. Point Park would shoot a solid 46 percent from the floor, but shot an abysmal 19% from downtown, as well as gave up 23 turnovers in the game. The Eagles would shoot an even worse 39%, while also hitting on only 19% of their three’s.
The Pioneers are now in the final month of the regular season, and will look to bounce back with a home match up on Saturday, Feb. 5, against RSC rival Ohio Christian University. The location still has yet to be announced and should be soon on the Point Park athletics website. The game will also be streamable through the previously mentioned website.