Perfect season ends for HU men's hoop team

The Huntington University men's basketball team saw its undefeated season come to an end with a 71-61 loss to host Cincinnati Christian University on Saturday, Dec. 21.

Three-point shooting was the key stat for the Foresters, as Coach Ty Platt's squad came up empty from beyond the arc, going0 for 12.

Huntington held a narrow 17-14 lead on Cincinnati Christian at 12:12 in the opening stanza when the Eagles went on an 11-2 run that gave them a 27-19 advantage with a tick over six and half minutes left until halftime. Cincinnati Christian's eight-point cushion was still intact by intermission, 38-30.

Trailing by as many as 10 in the second half, Huntington made things interesting with under five minutes to go, as freshman Derek Hinen sank a free throw and a bucket, senior Shane Merryman converted a pair of freebies and freshman Kyle Pipenger got a basket to trim the Eagles' lead to 64-61 with 2:04 left.

Cincinnati Christian, however, removed all suspense with a 7-0 scoring spurt that took the game to its final tally and dropped the Foresters to 12-1.

Merryman finished with a game-high 20 points for Huntington while Hinen capped his scoring total at 19.

DJ McCommons was one of four Eagles to scoring in double figures, tossing in 19. Michael Hill supplied 13, Kenny Gaynor added 11 and Willie McKinney had 10.

Huntington finished 22 of 51 from the floor for 43.1 percent to Cincinnati Christian's 27 for 58 effort for 46.6 percent.

Both teams fired over 60 percent from the stripe, with the Eagles making 10 of 16 for 62.5 percent and the Foresters hitting 17 of 25 for 68 percent. Merryman was a standout for Huntington at the line, swishing 10 of 12 attempts.

Junior Alec Peterson corralled seven rebounds for the Foresters to lead all players, but Cincinnati Christian edged them in boards overall, 25-21. The Eagles, 8-4, also topped their visitors in the assists department, 12-2.