The University of Scranton improved to 12-0 on the season on Wednesday night, winning their first game of 2019 by defeating visiting Gettysburg, 71-59, in the John Long Center. Sophomore Logan Bailey (Scranton, Pa./Scranton Prep) scored a game-high 20 points to pace the Royals in their final non-conference game of the regular season.
Junior Kyle DeVerna (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) added 18 points and five rebounds while freshman Jackson Danzig (Clarks Green, Pa./Abington Heights) enjoyed a strong all-around performance with 12 points, six rebounds, six assists, and three steals.
Neither team was able to take a lead greater than four points in an opening 15 minutes that saw Scranton and Gettysburg (3-9) trade the lead five times to go along with three ties. The Bullets took a 21-20 lead on a layup with 5:45 remaining in the opening half before sophomore Brian Monaghan (Florham Park, N.J./Morristown-Beard) scored on a jumper to start a 7-0 spurt for the Royals that gave the hosts a 27-21 edge at the 3:45 mark.
Gettysburg pulled to within two points at 29-27 before Scranton netted the final nine points of the first half to take a 38-27 advantage into the intermission.
The Royals stretched their lead to 44-27 when play resume as Danzig hit a three-pointer before Bailey completed an old-fashioned three-point play to make it a 17-point game early in the second half.
Gettysburg began to chip away at the Royals' lead and was able to trim it to eight points with 7:46 remaining in regulation, but Scranton prevented the visitors from coming any closer as a three-pointer from DeVerna quickly pushed the host's lead back to double-figures were it would remain the rest of the contest.
Freshman Ben Bosland (Colts Neck, N.J./Colts Neck) had a strong game off the bench for Scranton, scoring eight points while leading all players with two steals to go along with six assists which also tied for a game-high.
Senior Jack Connelly (Ellington, Conn./Ellington) contributed seven points in the win, DeVerna added five rebound to his 18-point effort, and Bailey paired two blocks to his game-high 20-point effort. Monaghan also set a career-high with five rebounds on the evening.
As a team, the Royals shot 42.9 percent from the field and made 14-of-17 free throw attempts, hitting on 82.4 percent of their efforts from the stripe.
Scranton also committed just 11 turnovers on the evening which matched a season-low and forced the Bullets into 18 giveaways.
Scranton, which is enjoying its best start since the 1991-92 season when the Royals went unbeaten through their first 20 games, outscoring Gettysburg 44-28 in the paint, though the Bullets claimed a 39-35 edge in rebounds.
Scranton, which now has 1,498 wins in program history, will resume Landmark Conference play on Saturday at Elizabethtown with the first of 13 league contests to close the regular season starting at 4 p.m. The Royals are two wins shy of becoming just the 10th program in NCAA Division III men's basketball history of reaching 1,500 wins.