MADISON, N.J. — Goucher reversed a season-long trend of getting off to slow starts, jumping out to an early 28-17 advantage this afternoon at Drew. The Gophers could not, however, continue their early momentum, falling behind 39-38 by halftime and ultimately dropping a 79-74 decision to the Rangers.
Goucher (7-10, 2-4 Landmark) lost its fourth-straight conference game, while Drew (9-8, 3-3) moved into a tie for fourth place in the Landmark standings.
Julian Livingston (Bowie, Md./Fairmont Heights) had 15 points and a season-high 10 rebounds, registering his first double-double of the season and fourth of his career. Jesse Mondry (Medford, Ore./South Medford) added 14 points for the Gophers, nailing four of his eight shots from long distance.
Eleven of Mondry's points came in the first 10 minutes of the game. He had a pair of threes in the opening minute, and his third 3-pointer gave Goucher its 11 point lead at 28-17, which turned out to be its largest of the game.
After that, the Rangers slowly began to chip away. With the Gophers holding a 38-32 lead in the half's final minutes, Drew closed out the frame on a 7-0 run, grabbing its first lead of the game with 1:34 to go.
The Rangers would never relinquish that advantage, scoring the seven points of the second half and extending its lead to 56-44 with 12:02 remaining.
Drew still led 70-60 with just over five minutes left when Alex Noble (Clinton, Md./Surrattsville) kick-started a 7-0 run for Goucher. Noble scored five of those seven points, and his free throw with 2:23 left reduced the Ranger lead to three.
After a made jumper by Drew, Brian Morton II (Ellicott City, Md./Mount St. Joseph) answered back with a layup to make it 72-69, Rangers. Goucher could not get a stop, though, as John Ford hit a game-icing 3-pointer with 1:06 to play.
The two teams shot an identical 45.8 percent from the field, with each hitting 27 of their 59 attempts. Drew edged the Gophers with a two point advantage from the free throw line and three extra made 3-pointers.
Goucher is next in action with a Wednesday night home matchup against conference leaders Catholic (11-6, 5-1). The Cardinals dropped their first Landmark game of the season today with a 92-82 setback at Scranton, but still hold a one game lead over the Royals. Wednesday's contest will begin at 7 p.m.