Written by Chris Pendleton
UNIONTOWN, Pa.—One of the best men's basketball seasons in university history came to an end Thursday evening as Southern Virginia University fell to No. 1 seeded Rochester College 59-47 in the USCAA National Semi-finals.
"That was a very physical game tonight and we really struggled offensively," said first-year Head Coach Tony Caputo. "Normally, we expect to win when we play as well defensively as we did tonight, but that is the first time all year that we've held a team below 60 points and not ended up with a win."
Southern Virginia (17-7) could never get going offensively against top-seeded Rochester (22-3) shooting a season-low 25.5 percent (13-for-51) from the floor and 23.1 percent (6-for-26) from 3-point range, compared to Rochester's 45.7 percent (21-for-46) as the Warriors held the Knights to their lowest offensive output of the season (47).
"The game was played very evenly except for shooting," Caputo said. "You can only really control your effort level and I can't fault our guys there. We played as hard as we could tonight, the shots just weren't falling."
Senior point guard and USCAA Second-Team All-American Isaac Jacobson (Kitty Hawk, N.C.) was the only Knight to reach double figures finishing with 10 points in the loss.
Rochester was led by its All-American Drew Maynard, who finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
"Our goal all year long was to win a championship, so it's disappointing to end the season one game shy of the finals," said Caputo. "But we had a great season and this is a great group of guys who represented our university well all year long."
Southern Virginia men's basketball ends its 2012-13 season with the fewest losses (7) and the second-highest winning percentage (.708) in program history. The Knights will also carry their program-record 28-game home winning streak into next season.
If favored Rochester goes on to win the tournament against Damien College on Saturday, Mar. 2, it will mark the fifth consecutive season that Southern Virginia has either won the tournament, or lost to the eventual champion.