On Friday night, Robert Morris fell to Northern Kentucky at home by a score of 81-76 despite another stellar performance from senior forward AJ Bramah.
After a very back-and-forth affair, RMU trailed by three points with just over six minutes remaining. The Colonials came down and missed two 3-pointers on consecutive possessions, giving the Norse time to pull away. Darrin Horn’s squad did just that, going on a 13-3 run to extend their lead to as much as 13, putting the Colonials away.
Robert Morris (3-6, 2-4 Horizon) shot 45.6% from the field, including 36% from 3-point range. The Colonials were led by Bramah who finished with 26 points, six rebounds, and five assists, and also received solid efforts from Kam Farris and Jon Williams, who both finished with 13 points.
“AJ was super active, he put up big numbers on the offensive side,” head coach Andy Toole said after the game. “I think there were a couple of breakdowns he had defensively hat hurt us at times. But he is important, he’s playing 36 minutes, carrying a crazy load, and so it’s a challenge. But he was very good on the offensive side and very active.”
In the first half, RMU played solid defense, heading into the break leading 33-31. In the second half, however, Northern Kentucky’s top two leading scorers, Trevon Faulkner and Marques Warrick, lived up to their names and caught fire. Faulkner’s 18 and Warrick’s 20, combined with team shooting percentages of 72% from two and 57% from three in the second half, were just too much for RMU to handle.
“They do a great job with their matchup zone,” Toole said. “It can be a tricky thing to find shots. I thought we took a lot of good ones tonight. We tried to go zone just to change their tempo. I thought for a few possessions we got a couple of stops and then they made a couple of tough threes at the end of shot clocks and Faulkner hit a few big threes that really were just killers. We’ve got to go back and watch film and see what kind of adjustments we need to make.”
Northern Kentucky (6-8, 4-5) also received a great game from 6-foot-9 freshman David Böhm. Böhm delivered one of his strongest games of the year for the Norse, scoring 16 points in 26 minutes after coming into this game averaging just 8.1 points and 19.7 minutes per game.
With the loss, the Colonials have now lost their last three games including both matchups against UIC last weekend in Chicago. They are now sitting at ninth in the conference while NKU moved up to seventh.
The two teams will come right back to UPMC Events Center tomorrow evening for a second straight showdown, this time tipping off at 5 p.m. on ESPN3.