Senior forward Marcus Hardy made the game-winning layup with under three seconds to go in the game as Moravian defeated Landmark Conference rival The Catholic University of America 71-69 Friday evening.
The Cardinals got on the board first with a rebound basket from junior forward Chris Kearney. Freshman guard Izel Dickerson would respond with a three-pointer from the corner as the Greyhounds took an early 3-2 lead. Senior guard Andy Roell, for Catholic, would make two easy layups to give the Cardinals a 6-3 lead two and half minutes into the game.
After Catholic went up 10-5, Dickerson would go coast-to-coast and make the easy layup. Junior guard D.J. Strayhorn would steal the ball, and classmate guard Garrett Johnson would connect on the easy layup. Johnson would go the distance and convert on an easy layup on the next possession to give Moravian an 11-10 lead with just under 13 minutes remaining.
The Cardinals would then go on an 11-0 run led by freshman forward Jared Prince. Dickerson would end that run with a three-pointer, and then a layup from Johnson would make the score 21-16, Catholic, with nine minutes left in the half. The two teams would exchange baskets until a jumper from Strayhorn and a three from Johnson cut the lead to four points at 28-24 with 5:37 remaining in the half.
Catholic would push its lead back up to eight with two minutes to go, but a layup from senior forward Jeff Cullinan while drawing the foul would bring Moravian within five points of the lead after he converted the free throw. The Cardinals would take a 40-31 lead into the locker room.
Moravian shot 33.3 percent from the field while Catholic shot 53.1 percent in the first half. Dickerson led the Greyhounds with ten points and three rebounds in the first half while Kearney led the Cardinals with eight points, five rebounds and three blocks.
Senior guard Mark Koelbel would get the Greyhounds on the board first in the second half with a layup. Kearney would answer at the other end to maintain Catholic's nine-point lead. Koelbel would come right back at them with a deep three to make the score 36-42 with just over 18 minutes to play.
On the next possession Dickerson would drive and get the layup while being fouled on the play. He would convert the free throw to make the score 39-42 with 17:41 left in the game. Koelbel would get another layup to make the score 41-44 with just under 16 minutes to play. After a steal from Johnson, Strayhorn would come back at the other end and hit a rainbow three to tie the game 46. Strayhorn would come right back on the next possession and hit a jumper to give the lead back to Moravian at 48-46 with 13:38 remaining on the contest.
Sophomore forward Cameron Cullen and Marcus would push the Greyhounds lead to six after layups made by each with less than 13 minutes left in the half. With a steal from Johnson, he would drive to the basket and put Moravian up 54-46 with 11:17 remaining in the contest. Senior forward Darrell Carroll would end the Greyhounds run with a layup at the other end.
Strayhorn would respond with a three-pointer to put the Hounds up 57-48, and then Johnson would make the coast-to-coast layup to push Moravian's lead to 11 points at 59-48 with 10:23 to go. The Cardinals would cut the lead back to four at 63-59 with 5:50 remaining after two layups from Carroll. Carroll would then make one-of-two free throws to make the score 63-60 with five minutes left in the game.
After two blocks in a row by Hardy, Moravian would get the ball at the other end as Strayhorn drew the foul. He would convert on one-of-two free throws to make the score 64-60 with four minutes remaining. Junior guard Nate Koenig would answer back with a three to bring the Cardinals within one point of the lead.
Carroll would then give the lead back to Catholic after a layup, but Strayhorn had an answer with a three-pointer to take the lead right back at 66-65 with 2:30 remaining in the contest. After a turnover by Catholic, Strayhorn would miss the layup, but Hardy was there to clean up the glass and make the basket.
Dickerson would head to the foul line with a 68-67 lead with 36 seconds remaining. He would convert on one-of-two to make it a two point game. Carroll would then go to the line and make both free throws to tie the game at 69 with 21 seconds remaining. With 11 seconds to go, Johnson would inbound the ball, as Cullen would find a wide open Hardy underneath the basket, as he made the easy bucket with three seconds remaining. Junior guard Shawn Holmes would heave a desperation shot from half court, but it would fall short as the Greyhounds would go onto win 71-69.
Leading the way for Moravian was Strayhorn with 18 points and six assists while Dickerson had a career-high 16 points. Johnson finished with 15 points and four steals while Hardy had seven boards, six points and three blocks. Koelbel tallied up seven points and one block.
Kearney led the way for the Cardinals with 12 points, nine rebounds and four blocks while Holmes had eight points and three assists. Carroll had 13 points and nine boards while Prince racked up seven points and three rebounds.
Moravian shot 41.2 percent from the field while Catholic shot 44.3 percent in the game. Catholic held the edge in rebounds at 45 to 31.
The Greyhounds are back in action tomorrow as they host conference foe Goucher College at 2 p.m. in Johnston Hall.