BLOOMFIELD, N.J. – Junior forward Derek Johnson (Conshohocken, Pa./Atlantic Christian) scored a team-high 22 points, including his 1,000th career point, to help the Philadelphia University men's basketball team defeat Bloomfield 78-72 in a Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) contest Thursday night in The Gym.
Philadelphia improves its overall record to 19-6 overall, 13-3 in the CACC, while pushing its winning streak to five. Bloomfield is now 11-13 overall, 10-7 against the conference.
Johnson entered the contest needing just four points to join the program's 1,000-point club. He started the game off by draining a 3-pointer 1:12 in to give Philadelphia a 3-0 lead. Then, at the 12:36 mark, Johnson drained a layup to become the 53rd player in school history to reach the 1,000-point plateau.
Senior guard Nick Schlitzer (Pottsville, Pa./Pottsville) shot 9-of-16 from the field to finish the game with 21 points. Junior forward TJ Huggins (Alexandria, Va./T.C. Williams) contributed 16 points, six assists, and five rebounds. Junior forward Peter Alexis (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./Holy Redeemer) added 12 points, nine rebounds, and four blocks.
For the fifth time this season, head coach Herb Magee played his starting five all 40 minutes.
The Rams overcame a 54-49 deficit with a 12-4 surge, capped by a Johnson 3-pointer with 8:05 left to grab a 61-58 lead. Johnson was responsible for six of the 12 points.
Bloomfield made a late push, getting a 3-pointer from Nick Davidson at the 1:16 mark to close the Philadelphia advantage to 71-70. On Philadelphia's next possession, Schlitzer answered back with a 3-pointer of his own that allows the Rams to regain a four-point lead.
The Rams' largest lead of the game came at the 7:02 mark of the first half when junior guard Andre Gibbs (Smyrna, Del./Smyrna) finished off a 22-6 run with a 3-point basket.
After Claude Blue pulled the Bears within 74-72, the Rams sealed the game with two made free throws from Johnson and Alexis.
Marvin Williams led Bloomfield with 26 points on 10-of-18 shooting, 4-for-6 from 3-point range. Davidson came off the bench to pour in 14 points. Blue ended up with 13 points and 12 rebounds.
Philadelphia heads to Concordia (N.Y.) for a CACC clash on Saturday, Feb. 21 at 3 p.m.