NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. - Playing in front of its home fans for the first time this season, Penn State New Kensington couldn't slow down Point Park University, as the Lions dropped a 99-63 outcome on Friday night. With the defeat, New Ken is now 0-3, while the Pioneers improved to 3-2 this season.
In the opening half of action, the Lions were unable to find their rhythm offensively, as they shot just 25 percent from the field, and failed to knock down a shot from behind the arc. Freshman Bernard Lawson (Pittsburgh, Pa/Serra Catholic) led the way with seven points, although most of his damage came from the foul line, where he was 5-5 in the half. Jahi Ogbonna (Pittsburgh, Pa/Allderdice) connected on three of his six shot attempts, scoring six points. Conversely, the Pioneers knocked down 45.9 percent of their shots in the opening half, including six from distance.
While the Lions' offense began the heat up in the second, the defense could provide little resistance to the scorching shooting of Point Park. After the break, Point Park shot 64.5 percent, including 8-14 from three-point distance. Sherron Schifino was particularly impressive, as he produced 13 second-half points. New Kensington, meanwhile, connected on half of its 26 shots, with senior Jamison Nee (Natrona Heights/Highlands) finding his stroke from distance, hitting 3-4 shots from three-point territory.
For the game, Lawson and Nee tied for the team lead with 14 points for the Lions, and they each also grabbed four rebounds to pace New Ken. Additionally, Ogbonna dished out a team-leading four assists.
Point Park, which competes in the River States Conference of the NAIA, was led by Schifino, who notched a game-leading 19 points. Five other Pioneers also reached double figures, including Adam Scott, who scored 15 points on 7-8 shooting, and also snatched a game-best nine rebounds. Additionally, former Penn State New Kensington player Juwan Willis started and scored five points for Point Park.
Penn State New Kensington will seek its first victory of the season on Tuesday, when it hosts Penn State Beaver at 8 p.m. in Penn State University Athletic Conference action. Point Park, meanwhile, returns home on Saturday to host Bryant & Stratton – Buffalo.
Written by: Sean Meyers