HAVERFORD, Pa. – With Ursinus needing every game to have a chance to make the Centennial Conference playoffs, the Bears took care of business on their end in a 87-84 win at Haverford on Wednesday.
Ursinus with the win improved to 10-12 overall and 7-8 in the Centennial. The Bears now find themselves one game back of a four-way log jam for third place with Muhlenberg, McDaniel, Gettysburg and Haverford who are all 8-7 with three games left. Ursinus has split the series with Gettysburg, Haverford and McDaniel and will play Muhlenberg one week from Saturday.
For Ursinus, the Bears got 27 points from senior guard Matt Hilton (Lewistown, Pa./Lewistown Area) who was 10-for-15 from the field and sank five three pointers. Sophomore forward Jon Ward (Allentown, Pa./Parkland) had 20 points, 13 of which came in the second half. Freshman guard Jesse Krasna (Fairless Hills, Pa./Pennsbury) had 12 points.
Haverford had strong performances as well, as sophomore forward Bo Friddell had 25 points and was a perfect 10-for-10 from the foul line. Junior guard Ian Goldberg added in 24 points, while senior forward Sam Permutt and sophomore guard Cam Baker each adding in 11. The Fords were strong from the foul line, making 22-of-28 attempts (78.6 percent) and shooting an even 50 percent from both the field (25-for-50) and the three-point line (12-for-24).
The Fords took an early 5-0 lead out of the game, before Ursinus rallied back and took its first lead at 11-9 with 13:26 left on a three-pointer from sophomore guard Matt Donahue (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Trinity). After Haverford took the lead back, Ursinus rallied from a 28-25 deficit to take a 44-32 lead with 54 seconds as a Hilton three-pointer completed the 19-4 run over a span of nearly 6:30.
Leading by seven at halftime, Ursinus saw its defense bend but not break in the early portion of the second half, before two Goldberg foul shots with 12:02 left gave Haverford a lead at 56-54. Again, Ursinus would go up by as much as ten, and again, Haverford would rally to tie the score. The last tie came with 1:41 left on a layup by Permutt. Krasna then sank two foul shots from 1:17 left for an 84-82 lead, followed by a foul shot from Ward with 36 seconds left for an 85-82 lead.
On the next Haverford possession, Permutt missed a layup which was grabbed by Ursinus and Hilton was fouled. Hilton sank one of two with 16 seconds left for a 86-82 lead. Haverford attempted a three-pointer, but, it did not fall and Krasna grabbed the rebound. He hit one-of-two foul shots from nine seconds left for an 87-82 lead.
Ursinus had a 32-23 lead on rebounds, and converted on 13 second-chance points to zero for Haverford.
The Bears host Johns Hopkins on Saturday for Senior Day.