University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown
Pitt-Johnstown Seal

vs. Shepherd (WV) University - 12/17/11

ATH11_056_MillerJ_TMountain Cats Shake Off Slow Start and Defeat Shepherd, 73-59
     12/17/11... (Box Score) Pitt-Johnstown used a 32-11 run to close out the first half and erase a 10-point deficit, on its way to cruising to a 73-59 WVIAC victory over Shepherd (WV) University, Saturday afternoon in the Sports Center.  Jordan Miller (Vinco, Pa.) scored a game-high 19 points to help the Mountain Cats improve to 6-5 overall and 4-2 in the WVIAC.
     Shepherd jumped out to a 16-6 lead 6:30 into the game on Justin Bryan's basket.
     However, it was all Pitt-Johnstown the rest of the half.  The Mountain Cats outscored the Rams 32-11 over the final 13:30 to take an 11-point halftime advantage.
     After the sluggish start, Pitt-Johnstown scored 10 straight to tie it on a Miller jumper at 10:22, before regaining the lead 20-18 two minutes later on Matt Palo's (North Huntingdon, Pa.) short jumper.
     Shepherd knotted it at 20 on the next possession, but the Mountain Cat got a bucket from Nick Novak (Murrysville, Pa.) with 2:00 minutes left to cap an 18-2 run to build it to 38-22, before the Rams answered with five straight points of their own to close out the half trailing 38-27.
     Patrick Grubbs (Turtle Creek, Pa.) extended the lead back to 13 early in the second half.  The Rams got the deficit down to eight on Aeron Spencer's 3-pointer 4:13 into the second half, but Pitt-Johnstown answered with a 3-pointer from Miller to extend it back to 14 at 49-35 with 12:46 to play and it was all Mountain Cats the rest of the way.
     Novak matched the Mountain Cats' 16-point first half lead with a pair of free-throws with just over 11 minutes left, and Marc Rozanski (White Oak, Pa.) pushed it to 59-39 at 8:44.
     Shepherd scored 12 of the next 13 points to pull to within nine at 60-51 on two Chad Moore free-throws with 4:43 to play, but that was as close as it would get.
     Pitt-Johnstown rebuilt the lead to 18 and went on to the 14-point win.
     Miller led all scorers with 19 points on 6-10 shooting and 5-6 from the free-throw line.  Novak had 16 points and a game-high nine assists, while Grubbs rounded out the Mountain Cats who scored in double-figures with 15 points and seven rebounds.  Bill Luther (Gibsonia, Pa.) finished with six points and six assists.
     The Mountain Cats ended the day shooting 50% (24-48) from the field, and 6-14 from behind the 3-point line, while holding Shepherd to just 30.4% (21-69) from the floor and just 4-28 from3-point range.  Pitt-Johnstown also hit 19-25 from the free-throw line.
     Grubbs stands in sixth-place on the Mountain Cat All-Time Scoring List with 1,482 points and third on the all-time rebounding list with 849 rebounds. Novak is tied with Chuck Bradford (1976-80) for 17th on the scoring list with 1,078 points and ninth on the assists list with 311, while Jordan Miller is eighth on the all-time 3-point field goal list with 151.
     Moore, who came into the game averaging over 22 points per game, was held to 10 points and nine rebounds to lead the Rams.  Spencer added 10 points, and Kirk Hairston pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds for Shepherd, which fell to 5-3 overall and 3-2 in the WVIAC.
     The Mountain Cats will break for the holidays before starting the second semester with WVIAC doubleheaders in the Sports Center with the Lady Cats against West Virginia State University on Saturday, January 7 and Alderson-Broaddus (WV) College on Monday, January 9.  The Lady Cats will tip-off the January 7 games at 1 p.m., with the men's game at 3 p.m.  The January 9 games are scheduled for 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.