TOWSON, Md. — Goucher came away with three points on each of its first four possessions of this evening's Landmark Conference game against the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in the Decker Sports & Recreation Center. It started with sophomore forward Julian Livingston (Bowie, Md./Fairmont Heights), who was fouled on a 3-point attempt, making all three of the free throws he was awarded.
The next three times down the court, freshman forward Jesse Mondry (Medford, Ore./South Medford) nailed shots from 3-point range. The third one put the Gophers, who were 0-6 all-time at home against the Mariners, up 12-1.
The Gophers, however, did little the rest of the first half to help their cause. For example, they committed 14 turnovers, which Merchant Marine converted into 18 points. Another thing head coach Leonard Trevino's squad had trouble doing was keeping the Mariners off the boards: 12 offensive rebounds helped produce 24 points in the paint for the visiting team in the open 20 minutes of play.
When the buzzer sounded ending the first half, the scoreboard showed the Mariners ahead 40-28.
By game's end, however, it had Goucher winning, 72-65.
The Gophers (3-3, 1-0 Landmark) appeared to make improvements in all facets of their game in the second half. They reduced their turnovers to two and their 10 second-chance points were one more than Merchant Marine's total. In addition, players off the bench supplied Goucher with 27 of its 44 points in the period.
A technical foul assessed to Goucher's bench may have been the turning point in the second half. Although the Gophers had closed to within four when they were hit with the technical, they reeled off nine consecutive points after the Mariners (2-3, 0-1 Landmark) made the two free throws that resulted from the infraction.
Alex Nobile (Clinton, Md./Surrattsville) ignited to 9-0 run with a steal that led to a conventional three-point play by Brian Morton II (Ellicott City, Md./Mount St. Joseph). Then there were a pair of made free throws from Norman Allen II (Bowie, Md./Riverdale Baptist) followed by another pair from Jordan Young (Washington, D.C./McLean School of Maryland).
Young's first free throw created a 50-50 tie; his second put Goucher ahead to stay. Nobile's 15-foot jumper concuded the run which turned a six-point deficit into a 53-50 lead.
It was still a one-possession game until Young got two more free throws to drop, making the score 58-54 with 6:22 left to play. Goucher's lead never dipped below five after another medium-range jumper by Noble with 4:32 showing on the clock.
Mondry led five Goucher players into double figures in scoring as he contributed 15 points to the win. Young, who was 9-of-10 at the charity stripe, delivered 13 points off the bench. Noble and Morton finished with 12 points apiece and Allen with 11.
Nick Sergio captured scoring honors for Merchant Marine as he turned in a 16-point, 10-rebound effort.