'Cats Come Up Short Against 24th-Ranked Pioneers, 71-66

'Cats Come Up Short Against 24th-Ranked Pioneers, 71-66

BUCKHANNON – Facing his old team, head coach Gary Nottingham and the West Virginia Wesleyan Bobcats had thoughts of an upset as they faced the 24th-ranked Glenville State Pioneers Thursday night in Rockefeller in a Mountain East Conference clash.

For Nottingham, who coached at Glenville State for 14 years and recorded 207 wins, it was his first opportunity to coach against his old team.

The Pioneers entered the game ranked 24th in the nation but had suffered back-to-back losses against West Liberty and Notre Dame.

The 'Cats played well but came up just short in a 71-66 setback.

Glenville State opened the game with a three-pointer, but Taylor Price popped in a jumper, Taylor Price made a lay-up and Tanner McGrew went inside for a lay-up to treat Wesleyan to an early 6-3 lead.

The two teams would trade the lead back and fourth most of the first half.

Down 21-18 at the 7:16 mark, Chris Dewberry canned a three-pointer and Anthony Richards stroked in another three to give Wesleyan a 24-21 lead.

After a Pioneer basket, McGrew weaved inside for two points and Richards uncorked another three to treat Wesleyan to their biggest lead of the game at six, at, 29-23, with 4:27 to go in the first half.

Glenville State closed the half on a 13-1 run to own a 36-30 advantage.

The Pioneers grabbed their biggest lead of the game 90 seconds into the second half at nine points, at 41-32.

McGrew made a jumper and Price scored on a lay-up to bring Wesleyan to within five, at 41-36.

Glenville would continue to hold the lead, but were never able to pull away from Wesleyan.

The Pioneers still led by five, at 68-63, with 2:38 remaining.

Dewberry hit a huge three-pointer to bring Wesleyan to within two, at 68-66 with 1:26 remaining.

Reggie Williams missed a three-pointer for Glenville State but Dewberry came up short on his jumper and the 'Cats were forced to foul.

Donte Morales made both of his free throws to put the game away as he increased the Pioneer lead to 70-66.

Price led the Bobcats in scoring with 18 points while Dewberry scored 16.

McGrew, who is fifth nationally in rebounding, had another double-double with 15 points and 14 rebounds.

Richards added nine points and six assists.

Grantham (pictured) had six points and five assists.

Wesleyan dropped to 7-10 overall and 5-6 in the MEC.

Glenville State improved to 13-4 overall and 9-2 in the MEC.

Wesleyan will return to action this Saturday when they host Virginia-Wise at 2 p.m.

 

(Photo courtesy of Peter Galarneau Jr.)