The road brings trouble for men's basketball

The Carnegie Mellon men’s basketball team played three in-conference road games this week.

On Jan. 23, the Tartans went to Atlanta to play the Emory University Eagles. The Tartans commanded the start of the game after going on an early 9–0 run. They shot 70 percent out of the gate.

The Eagles then quickly made a run of their own, eventually tying the game at 21 with eight minutes left in the half. Soon after, they took their first lead against the Tartans on an “and one” by Eagle Alex Greven. At halftime the score was 45–36, as the Tartans’ hot shooting cooled off to 29 percent for the rest of the half.

Emory came out re-energized after the break and went on a 10–0 run to start the second half. The Eagles were up by as many as 21, hitting their biggest lead at a score of 61–40.

The Tartans would make a 17–6 run, chipping away at the score to find themselves only down 10.

Senior Matthew Pettit scored six points during the Tartans’ run, but Carnegie Mellon would not come within fewer than nine points in the 88–71 loss. Pettit led the Tartans’ offense with 19 points, senior Shane Rife had 14 points, and first-year Christian Manoli added 10.

Despite their fast start, the Tartans shot just 37 percent from the floor, marking another sub-40 percent night for them. This has been a theme in the Tartans’ games recently: When the Tartans shoot above 40 percent, they are 4–6, but they are just 1–5 in games where they shoot under 40 percent from the field.

On Friday, the Tartans traveled to face the Washington University in St. Louis Bears in a competitive matchup.

The Bears controlled the first couple minutes of the game before the Tartans, led by Pettit, went on a 13–7 run to take an early 13–12 lead. The Bears’ Caleb Knepper then hit back-to-back three-pointers to put his team back in the lead by five.

The two teams traded baskets, but the Bears never surrendered the lead. The Bears’ interior defense was resilient, blocking six shots in the first half.

The Bears opened the second half with a 9–0 run, but the Tartans rebutted with a seven-point turnaround consisting of four points by first-year Sean Brophy. Then, with 4:54 left in the game, first-year Rashaun Riley rebounded and Pettit blocked and coasted for a fast-break layup to bring the Tartans within two.

“We were down by a lot in the second half, but managed to fight back despite the crowd’s noise,” Brophy said.
In the final three minutes, the Bears locked down the Tartans on defense and secured the 70–62 victory. Manoli led the Tartans with 18 points, and Pettit added 11 points with three blocks.

The Tartans faced the University of Chicago this past Sunday.

Check our online edition for the results.