Large Crowd Watches Gophers Rally for 60-54 Victory

Large Crowd  Watches Gophers Rally for 60-54 Victory

TOWSON, Md. — Goucher's Chris Outing (New Windsor, N.Y./James I. O'Neill) didn't make a shot the entire game.

But the junior forward more than made up for his 0-for-5 performance from the field. In just the final eight minutes of tonight's Landmark Conference contest against Juniata, he sank five free throws, grabbed seven rebounds and blocked four shots — and, collectively, his contributions helped the Gophers down the Eagles, 60-54.

The game drew 455 highly supportive fans to the Decker Sports & Recreation Center.

The first of Outing's four blocked shots in the latter stages of the contest preserved a one-point lead with 7:53 remaining. On Goucher's subsequent possession, he converted two free throws to put his team up 46-43.

The Gophers (8-11, 4-6 Landmark) were still leading, but it was only a one-possession game when Outing made his next two blocks. His free throw with just over three minutes left to play provided the home team with a four-point cushion, plus he closed out the scoring with a pair of foul shots with 13.2 seconds showing on the clock.

Outing wound up with five points, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots.

Juniata, which would have taken over sole possession of first place in the Landmark Conference had it won, needed less than six minutes to open up a double-digit lead on head coach Tom Rose's squad at the outset. A made mid-range jumper by Marcus Lee 4:50 into the contest staked the Eagles (14-5, 7-3 Landmark) to a 12-2 advantage.

Goucher went on a 10-2 run late in the first half to trim its deficit to four points, but before the period ended, Seth Brewer got a jumper to fall, making the score 30-24 in Juniata's favor after 20 minutes.

The Gophers went ahead for the first time when Mychal Stefanides (Bel Air, Md./C. Milton Wright) stole the ball at one end and raced upcourt and finished with a layup 7:18 into the second half. Stefanides came into the game as the Landmark Conference leader in steals and the four he made tonight hiked his total for the season to 33.

Kevin Miles (District Heights, Md./Gwynn Park) led all scorers as he finished with 21 points. He's been Goucher's top scorer in seven of their eight victories in 2015-16.

Lee furnished the Eagles with 14 points.

The Gophers, who are 4-1 in their past five games, play the first of their two head-to-head encounters with the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy this season on Saturday in Kings Point, N.Y. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m.