SALEM, Va. - In his first game back in the Goucher College men's basketball starting line-up, senior Elliott Wiley (Baltimore, Md./Loch Raven) led the way with 16 points, but opposing Hood was able to get the better of the Gophers, 81-61, on Sunday at the Cregger Invitational on the campus of Roanoke College.
With the defeat, Goucher fell to 0-9 overall for the year, while Hood improved to 4-7 with the win.
In the opening half, Hood was quick to strike, opening a 7-0 lead in the first minute and change of regulation. Goucher, however, scored seven straight points of their own to tie the game up at 7-7 with 14:41 to go in the period.
After Hood quickly went on a 5-0 run to go back up 12-7, the Gophers countered with another 7-0 run, which was punctuated with a three by junior Gabe Ceribelli (Monkton, Md./Hereford) that gave Goucher their first lead of the day at 14-12 with 11:18 left.
Hood, however, punched back, as a 13-2 run by the Blazers gave them their biggest lead of the day at 25-16 with 6:35 to go in the period.
The Blazers proceeded to open up a double-digit lead on the Gophers as the first half came to a close, as they led Goucher, 40-29, at intermission.
To start the second half, Goucher cut the Hood lead back down to single-digits quickly and stayed within distance of the Blazers entering the 10-minute mark trailing by seven (56-49).
But, Hood went up for good with a 10-2 run over a three-minute span that put them up, 66-51, with seven minutes left in regulation. The 15-point deficit proved to be too much for Goucher to come back from the rest of the way, as the closest the Gophers came to the Hood lead was 10 points (66-56).
Overall, Wiley scored in double-figures for the second straight game in his return weekend for the Gophers, ending with 16 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two steals. For his efforts, Wiley was named to the Cregger Invitational All-Tournament team, as well.
Elsewhere, sophomore Dwayne Morton (Waynesville, Mo./Waynesville) finished with 11 points and three steals, while freshman Devon Esslinger (Las Cruces, N.M./Las Cruces) rounded out the double-digit scorers on the day for Goucher with 10 points (on 5-of-5 shooting from the floor). For Morton, it marked the seventh time on the year that he has scored in double-figures, while Esslinger hit double-digits for the second time on the season in the defeat.
The Goucher College men's basketball team returns to action on Wednesday, traveling locally to Stevenson for their final game before the Holiday season break. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.