By Daniel Whitehead
HARRISBURG, Pa.—Snapping a six-game losing skid, the Southern Virginia University men's basketball earned its third Capital Athletic Conference victory of the season by defeating host Penn State Harrisburg, 74-67, Saturday afternoon at the Capital Union Building in Harrisburg, Pa.
The Knights (5-13) were outscored 42-18 in the paint during the game, but were able to race to a 32-24 halftime lead and maintain it through the second half to earn their second victory of the year over the Nittany Lions. Southern Virginia went 11-29 (.379) in the opening half while the Lions were 10-32 (.313), but the Knights achieved five three-pointers to Harrisburg's two to earn the advantage.
"Our shot distribution was nice throughout the game but especially the first half," said Southern Virginia head coach Tony Caputo. "The main difference today was our defense in the first half that allowed us to grab the early advantage. We came out shooting cold in the second half but were able to refocus and go on an 8-2 run during an important part of the game that they were trying to climb back in it."
Southern Virginia was also clutch from the free-throw line by going 17-23 (.739) while the Lions shot 59 percent with a 10-17 ratio.
The Knights were led by junior forward Wesley Evans, who finished with 14 points on 5-9 shooting for the game that included two treys and tied the team high with seven rebounds. The Crystal Lake, Ill., native also picked up three assists and two steals to help Southern Virginia garner its fifth win of the year.
Junior guard Chris Baker was second on the team with 13 points, while freshman Michael Price followed with 12. Junior guard Preston Eaton also poured in 10 points on the afternoon and went 6-7 from the free-throw line. Freshman Cody Hosier had nine points while Kenyatta Ruai earned his first start of his career.
The Nittany Lions were led by William Doyle's 16 points, while Jared Deibler and R. Anderson-Brown achieved respective point totals of 12 and 11.
The Knights continue conference play with a Wednesday evening game at home as they take on Frostburg State. Tipoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. at Knight Sports Arena in Buena Vista, Va.