Mont Alto, Pa. - Penn State Mont Alto's Jerome Evans provided a game-high 21 points and 17 rebounds, but it wasn't enough as the Lions were unable to hold off a late Penn State Lehigh Valley charge falling 70-68 in the PSUAC Quarterfinal on Wednesday evening.
In a game that featured 18 different lead changes, the final of which occurred on the last possession of the game when Zach Thomas of Penn State Lehigh Valley drilled a buzzer beater that left the Mont Alto faithful heartbroken. PSU Lehigh Valley rallied from a five-point deficit as Thomas took over down the stretch scoring four points including the buzzer beater after his team trailed 68-63 with 3:43 to go. PSU Mont Alto faltered down the stretch, going 0-of-2 from the field, missing the front end of a one-and-one at the free throw line and the team turned the ball over in its final possession.
Terrell Campell opened the nights scoring with a made free throw, but it was quickly answered by a Lehigh Valley trey at the 18:33 mark. The lead was short lived as the teams traded baskets for the next four-plus minutes before Lehigh Valley ripped off a 14-0 run forcing a Jack Schenzel timeout with his team trailing 23-14 with 9:14 remaining in the first half. Schenzel tightened up the defense and the team rallied back as the teams went into halftime tied at 37-37. Jerome Evans scored 11 of his game-high 21 points in the first half on 4-of-6 shooting including 2-of-3 from downtown.
Evans picked up where he left off opening the scoring in the second half with a trey. Neither team was able to gain the upper hand until PSU Mont Alto's Deshawn Franklin drilled a 3-point shot with just under six minutes remaining to put the home team up 64-62. On the ensuing Mont Alto possession, Shuntan Hickman drove the baseline and scored on a reverse layup. Lehigh Valley halted the momentum with a timeout as it mounted its final rally that proved to be just enough to move on in the PSUAC Postseason Tournament.
Penn State Mont Alto shot 44.6% (25-of-56) from the field, 45% (9-of-20) from 3-point range and held a 36-33 advantage over PSU Lehigh Valley in rebounds. The Lions finish their season with a 13-13 overall record.