No. 4 Bears Suffer First Loss of the Season at Carthage 82-80

No. 4 Bears Suffer First Loss of the Season at Carthage 82-80

Kenosha, Wis., November 27, 2013 — The No. 4-ranked Washington University in St. Louis men's basketball team surrendered a 13-point halftime lead as the Bears suffered their first loss of the season at Carthage College 82-80 Wednesday night in Kenosha, Wis. Washington U. drops to 4-1 with the loss, while Carthage improves to 2-1.

Senior guard Alan Aboona had 19 points on four three-pointers, while junior forward Matt Palucki had 17 points and 10 rebounds. Senior forward Chris Klimek added 14 points and fouled out with 3:19 to play.

Carthage had an early 18-9 lead early in the contest, but a 23-4 run gave Washington U. the 32-22 lead with 7:11 remaining in the first half. Palucki had 10 of the 23 points for the Bears during the run, including back-to-back three's. Aboona also had a pair of three's during the run as Washington U. hit 6-of-16 from beyond the arc in the opening 20 minutes of play.

The Bears had a 37-30 lead at halftime after shooting 43.8 percent (14-32) from the field. Palucki led all scorers with 15 points in the first half, including 4-of-7 from three-point range. After hitting 6-of-7 from the field to start the game, Carthage connected on just five of 24 shots in the final 15 minutes of the half.

Washington U. got the lead up to 12 (45-33) early in the second half after a bucket by junior Nick Burt, but Carthage responded with an 11-0 run to trim the advantage to 45-44 to force at WUSTL timeout. The Bears got the lead up to five on a bucket by sophomore Brandon Staffeil, but Kevin Sykes Jr. nailed back-to-back three-pointers to get the WUSTL lead down to one (55-54).

The Bears made six-straight free throws to get the lead back at 68-67 after falling behind by as many as five. Marion Senior took over the game for Carthage late in the ball game scoring nine-straight points, and his bucket with 4:28 to play put the Red Men up 74-73.

Aboona nailed an off-balance three-pointer to cut the Carthage lead to 81-80 with 8.2 seconds left, and then Senior made 1-of-2 free throws to make it a two-point game. WUSTL had one last chance, but Aboona's three-pointer at the buzzer was off the mark.

Senior led all scorers with 28 points on 11-of-18 shooting, while Sykes Jr. (14 points) and Reese Herth (14 points) also scored in double figures for Carthage. The Red Men hit 25-of-33 (75.8 percent) from the foul line.

Washington U. shot 48.2 percent (27-56) from the field, but once again was hampered at the free-throw line hitting 17-of-30. The Bears outrebounded Carthage, 38-32, and had 22 assists on 27 field goals.

Washington U. returns home to host DePauw University on Sunday, Dec. 1, at 2 p.m. The Tigers have a 3-0 record and are the top scoring defensive team in NCAA Division III allowing 49 points per game.

Bear Notebook: Washington U. and Carthage are meeting for the first time in school history … The double-double for Palucki was the sixth of his career … The Bears are 30-of-58 (51.7 percent) from the free-throw line in the last two games.