CENTER VALLEY, Pa.- The Juniata men's basketball team used a strong first half to get past Bryn Athyn, 79-54, Sunday afternoon in the consolation game of the Al Senavistis Memorial Tournament at DeSales University.
Nate DaCanal (Johnsonburg, Pa. / Elk County Catholic) setup Cameron Keck (Waynesboro, Pa. / Waynesboro) for a jumper to open the scoring. DaCanal got a steal on the other end and tossed it to Nathan Markey (York, Pa. / Central York) who found Keck for a three as the Eagles got off to a quick start. JC got another stop before Markey found Keck for another three to make it 8-0. The Lions got the board with a pair of free throws, but Keck wasn't done as Marcus Hall (York, Pa. / Trinity) was the provider this time for Keck's third triple in the first four minutes.
A jumper from Hall and a putback from Zach Engle (Millheim, Pa. / Penns Valley) made it 15-4.
Bryn Athyn slowly clawed their way back to within four, 15-11, with 12 and half minutes to go in the half.
Jake Holsopple (Duncansville, Pa. / Hollidaysburg) grabbed a rebound in traffic and laid it in while being fouled. His foul shot pushed the lead back to seven. The Lions drilled a three, but the Eagles continued to score at will as Holsopple scored on another putback. Keck forced a turnover and flipped it ahead to Markey who scored in transition to make it 24-14. DaCanal got a steal and finished inside himself to force a Lion timeout.
Juniata got a stop on the other side of the timeout, and Nick Rigby (Huntingdon, Pa. / Huntingdon H.S.)kicked it to Markey for three to increase the lead to 15.
The Eagles closed the final five minutes on a 10-4 run as they led 40-24 heading into the locker room.
The Lions got within eight in the first nine minutes of the second half, with their free throw making it 49-40. Hall converted a foul shot and on the next offensive possession hit Markey for another three to push the lead back to double digits.
The teams traded makes as the Lions tried to close the gap.
Keck made a three followed by two free throws, DaCanal swished a foul shot and Holsopple scored inside off a pass from John Kelly (Philadelphia, Pa. / Roman Catholic High School) to make it 63-47. Juniata cruised the rest of the way to a win.
The Eagles are done until 2020, where they will travel to Lancaster Bible on January 2nd. The tipoff is at 7:00.