PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (Men's Basketball) – The Shawnee State men's basketball team saw a seven point lead – less than a minute into the second half – slip away, as West Virginia Institute of Technology defeated the Bears, 71-67, in SSU's final non-conference matchup of the 2014-15 season on Saturday night at Frank & Janis Waller .
The Bears took a two-point lead into halftime after shooting 51.9 percent from the field during the opening stanza, but the Golden Bears limited SSU to just 36.8 percent shooting in the second half.
Sean Elliott (JR/Canal Winchester, Ohio) finished with a game-high 24 points on 5-of-11 shooting. The junior connected on 4-of-7 from behind the arc and 10-of-10 from the free throw line. Jorian Hudson (JR/Cincinnati, Ohio) added 13 points to go with four rebounds. Jacob Daniels (SO/Peebles, Ohio) led the way for the Bears with eight caroms.
Shawnee State led by as many as 10 in the opening half, using a 12-0 run beginning at the 8:32 mark, as Elliott connected from three. Frederick Moore (FR/Cincinnati, Ohio) followed with a jumper and Ethan Moffatt (JR/Somerville, Tenn.) converted a three the old fashioned way to make it 27-19.
Following the media timeout at the 5:48 mark, Devon Carter (JR/Clayton, Ohio) found Nick Gouch (JR/Columbus, Ohio) cutting backdoor and threw a lob that looked set to sail out of bounds. Gouch snatched the ball out of mid-air and finished the alley-oop to give the Bears an emphatic 10-point advantage, 29-19.
It did not take long, however for the visiting Golden Bears to cut into the deficit, as WVU Tech answered with a 13-4 run of their own. A jumper from Juwaun Wilson made it 33-32 with 1:58 to play.
Out of the locker room, Elliott connected on the first five points of the half, to send the home squad out to a seven-point advantage, 43-36, at the 19:08 mark. The Bears would not score again until the 12:08 mark. During that time, WVU Tech not only brought the score even, but built a six-point advantage.
The Golden Bears would lead by as many as 10 points midway through the second half. Shawnee battled back to tie the game for the fifth time at the 3:51 mark, but five-straight from the WVU Tech marked the final time the score would be tied.
WVU Tech closed the game with 6-of-7 free throws to put the contest on ice, bringing the game to its final 71-67.
SSU is back in action on the road next week, traveling to Lebanon, Tenn., to face Cumberland University on Thursday. Tip-off is slated for 9 p.m. ET.