Men’s Basketball: Mount Union Defense Shuts Down Valley Forge for Third Straight Victory

Tommy Stenger
Tommy Stenger

BEAVER FALLS, Pa.--Mount Union's men's basketball team improved to 3-1 on the season after the Purple Raiders defeated Valley Forge 82-48 Friday evening at Metheny Fieldhouse. The victory marked the Purple Raiders third straight victory.

Mount Union was led by freshman Deontae McCollum (Canton/Canton McKinley) who finished with 11 points. Senior Tommy Stenger (North Canton/Hoover) tallied 10 points while freshman Braedon Poole (McDonald) nearly missed a double-double on the day grabbing 12 rebounds and nine points.

Both freshman Collen Gurley (Akron/Hoban) and Stenger's performances earned All-Tournament honors.

Valley Forge (0-3) was led by Sean Word who recorded 10 points.

Mount Union started the game with a 19-8 run capped off with a jumper from Stenger. Mount Union hit back-to-back three-point buckets to give the Purple Raiders a 35-12 advantage with 3:11 left in the half. The Purple Raiders would not surrender the lead for the remainder of the half as Mount Union headed into the intermission break up 42-18.

The Purple Raiders shot 16-of-41 (39%) from the field and 4-of-5 (80%) from the free throw line while the Mount Union defense held Valley Forge to 7-of-28 (25%) shooting and 2-of-14 (14.3%) from behind the arc.

Mount Union began the second half with a dunk from senior Diallo Niamke (Sagamore Hills/Nordonia) to extend the Purple Raider margin to 44-18. The Purple Raiders went on a 14-3 run finished off with a layup from junior John Carroll (Massillon/Tuslaw). Back-to-back three-point field goals for Mount Union clinched the victory for the Purple Raiders.

Mount Union went 16-of-32 (50%) from the field as the Raider defense forced 13 turnovers. Valley Forge shot 11-of-34 (32.4%) and 5-of-13 (38.5%) from beyond the three-point line.

Next Up, Mount Union travels to Pittsburgh, Pa. to face Carnegie Mellon with tip-off set for 8 p.m.