WEST HARTFORD, Conn. – The Sacred Heart men's basketball team did not keep up with the Hartford Hawks' hot shooting in the second half, falling 86-72 at Chase Arena at Reich Family Pavilion Monday night.
Sacred Heart – 5-6
Hartford – 5-6
The Turning Point
Trailing by 10 with 5:24 to go in the opening half, a Mario Matasovic jumper and five straight points from Joseph Lopez got the Pioneers within three, 23-20, with 4:27 remaining. Kinnon LaRose made a three-pointer with 3:26 to go, moving SHU within two at 27-25. The Pioneers eventually took the lead with 0:40 left in the half on a Matasovic layup. However, a pair of Jason Dunne free throws gave Hartford a 34-33 lead at the half.
The Hawks came out firing in the second half, making five of their first six shots from the field to take a 45-37 lead. Back-to-back threes by Jack Hobbs put Hartford ahead 53-42 with 13:05 to go. The Pioneers would get as close as five points in the second half, but the Hawks shot 69% from the field in the second half to pull away with the 14-point victory.
- Hartford led 7-2 early on a John Carroll three-pointer at the 17:16 mark.
- SHU opened the game 3-for-14 from the field.
- The Pioneers trailed 15-7 before back-to-back layups from Matasovic and Radz cut Hartford's lead in half, 15-11, with 9:38 left in the half.
- Kinnon LaRose made the Pioneers' lone three-pointer of the half with 3:26 to go, getting SHU within two at 27-25.
- Behind five straight points from Matasovic and Lopez, the Pioneers took their first lead of the game, 31-30, with 1:03 left in the half.
- Matasovic led all scorers in the half with 14 points, going 5-for-7 from the field and 4-for-5 at the foul line.
- The Hawks opened the second half 5-for-6 from the field, taking a 45-37 lead on a J.R. Lynch layup at the 15:37 mark.
- Hartford led by as much as 11 in the second half.
- SHU got as close as five points with 8:52 to play on a Charles Tucker Jr. layup. He had all x of his points in the second half.
- Lopez secured his double-double with his 10th rebound with 0:22 left.
- Sean Hoehn led SHU with 12 points in the second half.
Key Stats and Notes
- Lopez led all players with 22 points and 11 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season and second in as many games.
- Matasovic had 16 points and six rebounds.
- Hoehn scored in double figures for the third straight game with 12 points.
- Hartford finished the game shooting 56.9% from the field, as the Pioneers shot 44.3%.
- Four Hawks scored in double-figures, led by J.R. Lynch's 21 points.
SHU returns to action after final exams on Sunday, Dec. 17 when the Pioneers host Binghamton at 1 p.m.