On Friday evening, Robert Morris (4-13, 3-11 Horizon) fell to Detroit Mercy on the road by a score of 85-74.
Although Robert Morris trailed for the majority of the game and at one point was down by 23 in the second half, the Colonials showed tremendous fight near the end of this one.
— RMU Basketball (@RMUMBasketball) February 20, 2021
With back-to-back possessions ending in hard-fought offensive rebounds and layups for Cameron Wilbon followed by a converted four-point play by Kam Farris, the Colonials cut the lead to just seven with around four minutes to play.
“Sometimes it’s easy to fight when you’re down 23,” RMU head coach Andy Toole told Pittsburgh Sports Now after the game. “I think the harder thing is how do you fight when the ball goes up and not getting down 23? You’ve got to give yourself a chance. That’s the thing that we talked to them about. We know we have a group of guys that is going to continue to compete, but the question is, why aren’t we doing that from the beginning if we are capable of competing that way at the end. We’ve got to do that from the tip, and we didn’t do that tonight, and it costed us.”
However, after that 17-4 run from Robert Morris that cut the lead to seven, Detroit Mercy closed out the game with multiple buckets and strong defense, not allowing RMU to get within seven.
Despite strong performances from veterans Jon Williams, Wilbon, and Charles Bain, the Colonials just could not stop Detroit’s star-powered offensive attack, giving up 18+ points to three different Titans.
Williams played a big offensive role for the Colonials with his 14 points on 5-for-9 shooting, including 4 for 8 on 3-pointers. Bain showed great finishing ability and touch around the rim, scoring 10+ points for the third straight game, and finishing with 19 points and four rebounds in the loss. Wilbon played especially well down the stretch and finished with 15 points and six boards.
The first half featured sloppy by both teams, but on paper was dominated by Detroit Mercy. The Titans shot 48.7% from the field in the first frame, building their lead to as much as 17 during the half and 14 at the break. In that half, Robert Morris turned the ball over seven times to Detroit Mercy’s two. The Colonials struggled shooting the ball, going 36.4% from the field and 38.%% from 3-point range.
The Titans were led by Antoine Davis, Noah Waterman, and Bul Kuol, who contributed 26, 19, and 18 points, respectively. As a team, they shot 50.8% from the field and 33.3% form 3-point range, led by Waterman’s 4-of-7 night from deep.
“He’s got great size and he can shoot over the top of guys,” Toole said about Waterman. “We were a little bit slow on some of our closeouts, we had some breakdowns defensively that gave him those open looks, but obviously credit him because he stepped up and made them. With a guy like that you can’t give him that kind of time or space.”
With its record now at 4-13 overall and 3-11 in conference play, Robert Morris is looking to pick up one last win tomorrow before heading into the Horizon League tournament. At the moment, Toole’s squad is sitting in last place in the league.
“We’ve got to get better and we’ve got to be able to execute our formula offensively and defensively,” Toole added. “We haven’t been able to do that really throughout the course of the year. That’s why our record is what it is.”
The Colonials will be back on the court tomorrow evening as they once again take on Detroit Mercy in their last regular season game of the year. Saturday’s game will be televised on ESPN3 and will tip off at 5 p.m.