By Daniel Whitehead
BUENA VISTA, Va.—Looking to extend a 28-game home winning streak, the Southern Virginia University men's basketball team fell to Marymount University in a heartbreaker, 83-82, to open Capital Athletic Conference play Tuesday afternoon at Knight Sports Arena.
The last time the Knights were defeated on their home floor occurred February 13, 2010, in a 70-61 defeat to The Apprentice School.
"We gave a winning effort, but it didn't quite work out in the end," said Southern Virginia head coach Tony Caputo. "We're getting better and I see improvement on both ends of the court. Pretty soon these improvements will lead to a successful outcome."
Although the Knights outscored the Saints, 50-45, in the second half, Southern Virginia could not overcome the gradual 38-32 lead Marymount built leading up to halftime. Closely contested throughout, the Saints outshot the Knights by a slim percentage, 50.9 to 47.5, and shot 52 percent from three-point range (9-of-17) to the Knights' 43.5 percent (10-of-23). Southern Virginia performed better from the stripe by going 14-of-24 on free throws (58.3 percent) to the Saints' 51.6 percent (16-of-31).
Transfer guard Preston Eaton paced the Knights with 21 points by going 5-for-12 from the field and 3-for-6 from three-point range in addition to 8-for-9 on free throws. The Mapleton, Utah, native also had three boards, four assists and four steals with only four minutes of rest.
Southern Virginia guard Chris Baker went 5-for-12 from the field en route to 17 points, converting five three pointers in the process. He also had eight rebounds and nine assists in the loss.
Junior Ben Canevari contributed in the post for Southern Virginia, scoring 12 points on 5-of-13 shooting and tallied five boards, an assist and two blocks. Michael Price poured in 10 points and junior forward Wesley Evans scored eight points to go along with seven rebounds.
Marymount was led by Reed Scott, who scored 22 points by going 8-of-12 shooting, including 6-for-7 from the free-throw line. He also had eight rebounds, one assist, a steal and two blocks in 37 minutes played. Antonio Rouse and JC Hoellich contributed 19 and 13 points, respectively, for the Saints.
The Knights next compete Saturday at home against St. Joseph's (Brooklyn). Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. at Knight Sports Arena shortly after the women's basketball game.