By: Matylda Zamudio
MONT ALTO, Pa. — The Penn State Beaver men's basketball team lost 69-52 on the road to the No. 1 seed in the West, Penn State Mont Alto, in the quarter-final round of the Penn State University Athletic Conference Tournament on Tuesday night.
PSUAC Player of the Week junior guard John Foster (Austin/Del Valle) topped Beaver's scoring list tonight, earning 19 points, nine rebounds, one assist and one steal followed by freshman guard Sonny Martinez (Austin), who scored 10 points, two rebounds one assist and one steal coming off the bench.
1st half: In first eight minutes of the game, Mont Alto jumped out ahead early with a 9-0 run. But Beaver then scored 4 straight points in the next two minutes to make it a 5-point game (9-4). At 9:07, Foster hit a 3-point jumper and was fouled by Mont Alto 26 second later to send him to the free-throw line for two attempts, hitting one to get Beaver within striking distance and only trailing by 4 points (12-8). However, momentum shifted back to the Mont Alto men, who then a 17-2 run and put Beaver in a 19-point hole with three minutes left in the half (29-10). Despite Foster and Martinez then combining for back-to-back 3-pointers for Beaver, the Lions trailed 32-16 at halftime.
2nd half: After the break, freshman guard Keon Butler (Annapolis/Star Severn School) opened up the scoring after being fouled by Mont Alto six seconds in (32-17). As the half continued, the teams went back-and-forth on scoring, and the Lions couldn't get the stops they needed to recover after falling behind in the first half as Mont Alto upheld at least a 15-point lead for the remainder of the game, which ended with Mont Alto only outscoring the Lions 37-36 in the second. Beaver fell to Mont Alto by a final score of 69-52 and finished fourth in the division.
Box Score Highlights: Beaver outshot Mont Alto 80 percent to 66.7 percent from the free-throw line, hitting 8-10 shots.
Beaver finished the season as No. 4 in the PSUAC-West with a 12-7 record in the PSUAC standings and a 16-10 overall record for the regular season.