Men's Basketball: Friga's Game Winning Three Lifts Mount Union Past Muskingum

D'Vontay Friga ( Photo by Sam Boyle)
D'Vontay Friga ( Photo by Sam Boyle)

ALLIANCE, Ohio--Junior D'vontay Friga (Cuyahoga Falls) sank a three-pointer with three seconds left to lift Mount Union over Muskingum 83-80 in Ohio Athletic Conference action Wednesday night at the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex.

Friga's three was part of a game-high 24 point performance as four Purple Raiders finished with double-digit point totals. Senior Diallo Niamke (Sagamore Hills/Nordonia) recorded 14 points while fellow classmates Andrew Francesconi (Tallmadge) and Tommy Stenger (North Canton/Hoover) each finished with 11 points.

Muskingum (6-8, 2-5 OAC) was led by Mitch Clark with 23 points. 

The Raiders jumped out to a 7-2 lead to start the game. The Muskies would bounce back to go on a 14-2 run to give Muskingum a 25-15 advantage with 11:25 left in the first half. Mount Union responded with an 11-3 run of its own capped off by a layup from Niamke to shrink the Muskie lead to two with 8:11 left in the half. A layup from Gurley with 2:10 remaining saw Mount Union close the gap to 42-39. Mount Union trailed heading to the intermission break at 44-39.

Friga opened the second half with a three-pointer that cut the Muskingum advantage to 46-42. A quick 6-2 run for Mount Union saw the Muskie lead close to 56-52. Mount Union would continue to chip away at the Muskie lead as their lead grew to as much as nine over the next four minutes. A layup from Diamke tied the game at 78 with 1:44 left in regulation. After a Muskie bucket, Bower-Malone tied the game once again at 80. Following a missed Muskingum layup, Friga buried a three-pointer in the corner to give Mount Union the victory 83-80.

It marked the sixth game of the season that the Raiders shot at least 50-percent from the floor as they went 35-of-64 (5-of-9 from the charity stripe).

Mount Union (12-2, 6-1 OAC) stays home as the Purple Raiders continue conference play Otterbein, Saturday, January 12 at 2 p.m. at the MAAC.