Men’s basketball splits two games in overtime

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The Gannon University men’s basketball team played in back-to-back overtime games last week against California University of Pennsylvania and Edinboro University and wound up with a split.
On Saturday, 23 points from freshman guard Victor Olawoye wasn’t enough for the Knights, as they fell to Edinboro, 74-67, at the Hammermill Center.
A career-high 22 point performance from junior forward DeAnte Cisero and a 15-point, 11-rebound double-double from senior forward Joe Fustine powered Gannon to a 70-69 road victory Wednesday against Cal U.
The Knights and the Fighting Scots found themselves in a duel on Saturday that was close the whole way.
Edinboro ended the first half on a 6-2 run to take the lead, 30-28 going into the intermission.
An early 8-0 run from Gannon to start the second half gave the Knights a six-point lead. A few minutes later sophomore guard Sean Colosimo buried a 3-pointer to give the Knights a 41-35 lead.
Colosimo and Fustine both had 11 points for Gannon. The 11 points from marked a career-high for Colosimo, who has been seeing an increase in minutes in the past few games.
“It’s an incredible opportunity, and I am grateful that my coaches have confidence in my ability to help the team when I am on the floor,” said Colosimo.
Gannon led 60-55 with 2 minutes, 37 seconds left to play in regulation, but two baskets for the Fighting Scouts brought them to within one possession.
DeAnthony Owens then proceeded to send the game to overtime with a layup leaving just 1.6 seconds on the clock.
Edinboro then outscored the Knights 13-6 in overtime to pick up the win.
Cathedral Prep graduate Jaryn Simpson scored 20 points for the Fighting Scots.
Cisero, who had the hot hand for Gannon in Wednesday’s victory over Cal U, made two clutch free-throws with 1.6 seconds left to give the Knights the victory.
Freshman forward Kevin Dobbs scored a career-high 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds in the winning effort.
Fustine’s double-double was the first of his career. The 11 rebounds that he pulled down also marked a career-high.
The playoff chase is beginning to become very interesting in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference West.
Gannon is 9-16 overall and 7-11 in PSAC West play, good for fifth place, two games behind fourth-place Pitt-Johnstown.
The top four teams in the West will get a first-round home game, while the top six will make the postseason.
With the Knights in the thick of the playoff battle every game is meaningful.
However, Colosimo understands the importance of staying in the present and focusing on the task at hand.
“Our goal is to take each game one at a time and make sure we are competing every single day to better prepare ourselves for a strong finish,” he said.
The Knights will be in action next at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Hammermill Center when they host crosstown rival Mercyhurst, which is currently third in the division, in their last home game of the season. The Lakers won the previous meeting, 51-35, at Mercyhurst.
“It’s always a battle in the Pride of Erie game,” said Colosimo. “Credit to their team for getting us in our first matchup, but we will be working hard this week to defend our home court on Saturday.”
Given the historic rivalry as well as the current playoff situation that Gannon finds itself in, this game will be of the utmost importance for both teams.

MICHAEL MARSICO
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