ST. MARY'S CITY, Md. --- The Pioneers traveled to eastward to the "Old Line State" of Maryland to start the 2015/16 season by taking on John Carroll University in the Dan Green Memorial tournament. Four teams are taking part in the two day tournament which will conclude on November 15.
The Blue Streak and the Pioneers battled in the first half with both teams looking to find the edge and establish early control. John Carroll would push out to an early 14-8 lead with 13:30 remaining, before back-to-back three pointers by sophomore Tristan Burgess tied the game at 14-14. Both teams would battle back and forth throughout the remainder of the first half with neither team able together a substantial run. The Pioneers would lead briefly 29-26 on the third Burgess three pointer of the half before the Blue Steak edged away before halftime taking a 45-40 lead at the break.
Transylvania held the higher shooting percentage at the break shooting 44 percent to John Carroll's 41.9 percent. Burgess led the Pioneers in the first half with 12 points, shooting 4-7 from behind the arc. He was followed by Cooper Theobald with 10. David Linane would lead the Blue Streak with 12. A key statistic that would foreshadow the next 20 minutes was turnovers with the Pioneers having a 16 to 7 margin.
It would be a tail of two halves and the Blue Steak came out to start the second on a 15-0 run that gave them an edge that the Pioneers could not dull. Once the Pioneers settled after a timeout at the sixteen minute mark the team's battled with similar numbers from that point forward but John Carroll would prevail winning 92-75. Transylvania had good second half performances with Theobald chipping in eight points and Simon Christon and Theobald with seven points each. Freshman Bo Schuh would score 10 points and grab nine rebounds for the game. Burgess would lead all Pioneer scorers with 19.
Head Coach Brian Lane commented on the seasons opening game; "We knew our first round matchup was going to be a tough one. JC returned a veteran team that played in the NCAA tournament last season and are picked very high in the OAC. We played 4 guards most of the night because Parker (Stansberry) was not able to play due to injury. If we take care of the basketball in the first half (16 turnovers) we are leading and things lol a little different when JC made their run early in the second half.
Speaking on the play of his team tonight, "The effort that we had starting three freshman was terrific and they did not back down. Tristan Burgess was a huge spark for us off the bench and we did a nice job of finding him and setting good screens."
Looking forward to tomorrow and how tonight's game against the Blue Streak will help the Pioneers, Coach Lane added; "I scheduled this tournament so our guys could see how NCAA tournament teams compete. It was eye opening and should pay dividends down the road. We have a quick turnaround to play an outstanding Bridgewater team tomorrow at 1 pm."
Live Stats will be available by following the link listed on the Men's Basketball page at www.transysports.com.