Over the weekend, the Robert Morris men’s basketball team dropped two games to conference foe UIC, bringing their Horizon League record to 2-3.
RMU was led in both games by senior AJ Bramah, who has topped the score sheet for them in every game this season. In Saturday’s overtime loss, Bramah finished with 23 points and 16 rebounds in 41 minutes. The team’s second-leading scorer on the season Jon Williams struggled offensively, going just 1 for 6 and finishing with four points. They also received a boost from junior forward Kahliel Spear, who contributed ten points in 22 minutes.
One of the interesting storylines throughout this game was the play of freshman Pat Suemnick. The Green Bay native played seven minutes in the first half, almost topping his season average of 7.8 minutes per game in that frame alone. However, he struggled with foul trouble and was forced to sit on the bench with four fouls for the majority of the second half.
“We would have liked him to play more but he got in foul trouble,” Toole told Pittsburgh Sports Now after the game. “It’s hard because he is trying to learn as a freshman and we haven’t had the same number of days to prepare him, so it becomes a challenge. He picked up some fouls, he picked up a moving screen and that killed him. That was his third foul and so now all of a sudden he has to come out of the game and I thought he had been productive. He’s got to learn, and I know he wants to do that, so I think he will eventually figure some of that stuff out.
The Colonials next matchup comes against Northern Kentucky, who has lost four straight games heading into this two game set in Moon Township.
“I think we have a lot to continue to work on,” Toole added. “I don’t know a ton about Northern Kentucky, but I’ve seen them a couple times while trying to get familiar with the league. I know that Darrin Horn does a great job, and obviously they’re the defending tournament champs.”
The Norse (5-8, 3-5 Horizon) are led by junior guard Trevon Faulkner and freshman guard Marques Warrick, who are averaging 16.8 and 14 points per game, respectively. One of Northern Kentucky’s strongest assets has been the rebounding ability of 6-foot-7 Adrian Nelson, who is averaging 10.2 rebounds per game and even pulled in 19 in the season opener against Ball State. Having won back-to-back Horizon League Championships, coach Horn’s squad is looking to turn around their season against RMU.
“We know it’s going to be another big challenge and we will start to prepare early this week and get to the things that we need in order to be successful. I told the guys in the locker room after the game that we have got to clean some things up, whether it’s offensive or defensive execution, in order to be more successful next time out.”
RMU will look to bounce back when it travels back home for this Horizon League matchup against Northern Kentucky on Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. on ESPN3. The two teams will also play on Jan. 23 at 5 p.m., also on ESPN3.