PHILADELPHIA – The Philadelphia University men's basketball team had its five-game winning streak snapped after a narrow 60-59 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) loss to Holy Family in the Campus Center Wednesday night.
Philadelphia is now 13-7 overall and 8-3 in the CACC, while Holy Family is now 13-9 overall and 9-4 against the conference.
Freshman forward Peter Alexis (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./Holy Reedemer) recorded his eighth double-double of the season, fifth in the last six games, with 21 points and 13 rebounds, both game-highs. Freshman guard Andre Gibbs (Smyrna, Del./Smyrna) netted 17 points, while senior guard Jim Connolly (Harleysville, Pa./Souderton Area) poured in 11 points.
Alberto Munoz and Angel Ayala paced the Tigers with 16 points each. Ervin Ezell contributed 12 points and Isaiah Gans had 10 points.
The teams came out of the locker room to start the second half tied at 29. Behind eight points from Ayala, the Tigers jumped out to a 43-34 lead at the 13:06 mark.
Philadelphia made a strong push over the final 10:17. The Rams chipped away at their deficit until a 9-2 spurt, capped by an Alexis put-back, put them in the lead for the first time in the half (57-55) with 3:16 left.
Down 58-57, Alexis came through with a lay-up with 97 seconds left on the clock to put the Rams back in front 59-58.
With 1:23 to play, Gans hit a 15-footer to give Holy Family the 60-59 lead. On the Rams' final possession of the game, Alexis took an 18-foot shot from the right wing that bounced off the back of the rim.
In the first half, the Tigers sprinted out to a 22-7 advantage over the first 10:33. Munoz was responsible for 13 points the 22 points. The final 9:27 of the half belongs to the Rams as they had a 22-7 run, which had contributions from five different players, to tie the score at 29.
The Tigers shot 42.3 percent (22-of-52) from the field, while the Rams connected at a 37.1 percent (23-of-62) clip. Philadelphia dominated the paint as it owned a 45-26 rebounding advantage. The Rams had 25 offensive rebounds that led to 26 second –chance points.
Philadelphia returns to the Gallagher Center to take on Dominican (N.Y.) in a CACC clash Saturday, Feb. 9 at 4 p.m. Senior guards Jim Connolly and Stephen Griffin, and four-year team manager Mike Decker will be honored before the game as part of Philadelphia University's senior day celebration.