MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. — The Robert Morris bench attempted to fire up those on the court with a defense chant and the entire bench from coaches on down clapped in approval, but that applause quickly died down.
Following a jump ball, Bowling Green’s Cam Young cut to the basket and was able to convert a layup, just beating the buzzer while RMU’s Charles Bain fouled him on the sequence.
Robert Morris coach Andy Toole turned away from the action, both hands above his head, clearly frustrated by a sequence which put Bowling Green up by double digits.
It was an inconsistent game for Robert Morris as it fell 85-65 to Bowling Green Friday night at the UPMC Events Center.
For the second consecutive contest, AJ Bramah led Robert Morris (1-1), this time scoring 20 points and grabbing eight rebounds.
Justin Turner led Bowling Green (5-2) with a double-double consisting of 24 points and 11 assists, while also recording eight rebounds. Daeqwon Plowden had 15 points and 13 rebounds while both Caleb Fields and Trey Diggs also had 13 points. Bowling Green’s bench also outscored Robert Morris 26-14.
Robert Morris, which was playing its first game in 13 days and opener against an NCAA D-I opponent, got off to a sluggish start opening 0-for-9 from the field.
Bowling Green opted to go with crisp passes and post touches early on the try and get its offense going, but did not have much early success in getting the ball in the basket.
Robert Morris appeared to have trouble early on with Jon Williams picking up two early fouls which seemed to take the Colonials out of its rhythm.
With Bowling Green up 14-5 at the second media timeout, Robert Morris began heating up on the offensive end and closed the half shooting making 14 of its last 19 shots, good for a 73.7% clip.
When Charles Bain made the team’s first basket, it appeared to add a spring to Robert Morris’s offensive step as it ran through sets and went on a 13-4 run which activated a Bowling Green timeout.
Perhaps the high point from the first half came when freshman Enoch Cheeks stole a rebound, was successfully able to escape a Bowling Green trap and make an outlet pass to a wide open Bramah who threw down a dunk.
On multiple occasions, Robert Morris cut its first-half deficit to one point, but Bowling Green had a response at the ready, making several ball rotations and finding open shooters to string multiple scores and stops together.
Robert Morris attempted to use the final media timeout to switch its defense, but despite the many traps, it appeared as though a trail Colonial was unable to get to his matchup quick enough which led to some Bowling Green baskets.
Though RMU shot 50% from the field in the first half, it trailed 41-37 at halftime.
Robert Morris had another slow start to begin the second half as Bowling Green opened up a 10-point advantage. Bramah and Cheeks were responsible for the points in the run which activated a BGSU timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, Bowling Green stretched its lead to double digits again. On three consecutive Robert Morris possessions, Kaliel Spear got called for two moving screens, and his replacement, Olisa Ngonadi, also got called for one and was immediately subbed out.
Robert Morris will next play Sunday at Marshall in a contest scheduled for 2 p.m. tipoff.