Shazier Strikes Again: Bucknell Beats Men’s B-Ball in O.T.

The men’s basketball team lost a grueling 64-62 overtime game at Bucknell last Saturday before getting crushed by Holy Cross, 68-44 in Worcester, Massachusetts last night.

Against Bucknell, Colgate had early leads of 10-0 and 19-5, but a horrible offensive cold spell doomed the Raiders. After Yaw Gyawu gave Colgate its 19th point with a fast break dunk, the Raiders missed 13 of 14 field goals in the last 11:53 of the first half and turned the ball over seven times in that span. Bucknell, also struggling on the offensive end, somehow mustered up enough points to take a 22-21 lead into halftime.

The Raiders started out hot in the second half. First-year point guard Anthony Hill hit a layup and three-pointer on back-to-back possessions, and Gyawu followed that up with back-to-back jumpers. Eventually, Colgate took its largest lead of the second half when senior forward Alex Woodhouse hit a baseline jumper, giving the Raiders its largest lead of the half, 39-31, with 11:25 left in the game. In a mirror image of the first half, though, Colgate once against went into an offensive funk. Bucknell took advantage of its good fortune, going on a 13-0 run that was buoyed in part by two three-pointers and an old-fashioned three-point play. Riding a 5-point lead after the under-eight timeout, Bucknell kept finding offensive success and had a 51-45 advantage with 4:43 remaining. Not to be denied, Gyawu and senior point guard Tre Vinson scored seven points between them, and Colgate took a 52-51 lead with 2:46 left. Bucknell guard Bryan Cohen scored on a three-point play, but Woodhouse, showing his prowess outside the paint, knocked down another jumper. Bucknell first-year forward Enoch Andoh hit a layup, but Colgate sophomore guard Mike Venezia answered that make with a jumper of his own, tying the game at 56. Both teams had chances to take another lead in regulation, but efforts turned out to be fruitless.

In overtime, both teams went cold, but a Vinson bucket with 1:20 gave Colgate a 62-58 lead. Bucknell forward G.W. Boon, who was 3-of-13 shooting at this point, then knocked down a ridiculous, NBA-range three-pointer from straight on that was nothing but net. On the other end, Boon continued his overtime dominance with a block of a Willie Morse layup, leading to the decisive moment of the game. Boon, still trying to be Superman, went in for the winning layup with seven seconds on the clock, but Woodhouse blocked his attempt away. However, Boon managed to track down the ball, and possession went to Bucknell reserve Darryl Shazier in the right corner. The lefty, who had missed all five of his field goals up until this point, calmly hit a three-pointer with 2.8 seconds left. A Vinson half-court shot at the buzzer was well short of the goal, ending the game.

This wasn’t the first time that Shazier has broken Colgate hearts. Last year, Bucknell overcame a double-digit deficit to defeat Colgate at Cotterell Court, 91-85 in overtime after Shazier nailed a three-pointer at the buzzer in overtime.

For Colgate, Gyawu had a career-high 18 points and five rebounds. He dominated the paint on this night with layups and baby jumpers. Gyawu is Colgate’s leading scorer in Patriot League play.

“Yaw has got a lot of athletic ability, and he really works hard at practice and wants to get better,” senior co-captain Willie Morse said. “And that’s why he’s starting to play well now.”

Woodhouse scored 11 points, grabbed eight caroms and turned away six Bison shots. For Bucknell, Boon led all scorers with 15 points on just 4-of-15 shooting. Cohen scored 14, and Andoh went for a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.

As seen in this game, Colgate is sometimes a two-faced team. The Raiders are solid when shots are falling, but when they aren’t, it can get very ugly.

“We just need to play consistent,” Morse said. “When we play hard and play together as a team, we really are successful, but we need to do that for 40 minutes a game and every night. “

Unfortunately, the Raiders could not play consistent basketball against Holy Cross. The Crusaders jumped out to a 15-3 lead as Colgate could get nothing going offensively, struggling to find an open look and forcing up tough shots. However, the Crusaders then went cold, allowing for ‘Gate to crawl within six points, 26-20, right before halftime when Gyawu knocked down a buzzer-beating 15-footer.

The Raiders managed to get within four points early in the second half, but a 15-2 Crusader run doomed Colgate to its fourth Patriot League loss. Colgate could not find offensive success whatsoever in the second half, and Holy Cross ran away to its league-leading fifth Patriot League victory.

For Holy Cross, forward Colin Cunningham scored 13 points and grabbed five steals. First-year guard R.J. Evans, the favorite for Patriot League Rookie of the Year, scored 12 points. Gyawu scored 15 points for Colgate, but he also committed seven turnovers. Venezia tallied nine points. Unfortunately, in a telling sign that the team sorely misses former top scorer Kyle Roemer, Gyawu and Venezia were the only two Raiders to make more than one field goal on the night.

The theme for this game, however, was Holy Cross’ sheer dominance in the paint. The Crusaders, whose front line stands at 6’6″, 6’8″ and 6’9″, were just a bad matchup for the smaller ‘Gate squad. Holy Cross out-rebounded Colgate 30-18 and outscored them 30-12 in the paint.

Colgate will now start a four-game homestand with a 7 p.m. matchup against Navy on Saturday.