After losses to Wooster and DePauw, Lords need to win against Hiram to keep season alive.
The playoff hopes of the Lords basketball team took a hit on Wednesday night when the team lost 87-62 to the College of Wooster. In the loss, Alexander Powell ’18 scored 15 points and was the only Lord to score in double digits. With just one game remaining on their regular season schedule, the Lords have really begun to watch the league scoreboards, as their playoff hopes are no longer completely in their own hands.
The men’s basketball team also suffered a tough defeat on Saturday afternoon, dropping their game against DePauw University 73-68. Prior to the game, the team’s two seniors were honored by the athletic program for their years of athletic accomplishments and thousands of hours dedicated to the team. Ethan Shapiro ’17 grabbed seven rebounds and scored seven points in front of his family on his Senior Day, while fellow senior Chris Link, who has been forced to sit out most of the season due to injuries, made his first start of the season.
After remaining tied or slightly behind for most of the game, DePauw managed to win the game in the final minutes by knocking down their free throws. A free throw by the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) leading scorer Luke Lattner put the Tigers up 69-68 with about 30 seconds to go. The Lords were unable to capitalize on the opportunity to take the lead, travelling on the ensuing possession. Lattner was fouled again and made both free throws to extend DePauw’s lead to three points. On the following possession, the Lords were able to get three shots to tie the game due to offensive rebounds, but missed the first two opportunities before the third attempt was blocked. In spite of the loss, Bennett Grigull ’18 had a game-high 22 points and Phillip Crampton ’18 hit four three-pointers on his way to 16 points.
The reality of his ending collegiate career is starting to sink in for Shapiro. “The last home game in Tomsich [Arena] will be really special for me, and I can’t imagine what I will be feeling when the game ends,” Shapiro said prior to Wednesday night’s game against the College of Wooster. “The goal right now is to make the playoffs, and everyone on the team knows what we have to do in order to make the postseason. I keep telling the guys how important these last two games are, and we just got to keep pushing, go 100 percent and leave nothing out on the floor.”
With just one game left after Wednesday’s loss against Wooster, the Lords will need a win against Hiram College on Saturday to extend their season and the collegiate careers of their seniors. The team will also need Allegheny College to lose both of their remaining games for Kenyon to make the playoff tournament.