Robert Morris men’s basketball began a seven-game road trip in Dayton, Ohio Saturday afternoon.
The Colonials entered the game 20.5-point underdogs against the No. 21 Flyers but kept the action close the entire game.
RMU (2-2) struggled to put together a complete effort against a tough Dayton (3-1) squad in a 60-51 defeat.
Josh Corbin, Kahliel Spear, and Enoch Cheeks began the offensive output for the Colonials. Cheeks missed his first few shots and finished 2-of-7 from field in the first half, foreshadowing RMU’s shooting habits.
RMU struggles to find a consistent offensive output and committed eight first-half turnovers.
Dayton owned an 11-7 lead with just under six minutes into the game. RMU trailed by as much as 15 in the first 20 minutes and shot 8-for-28 (29%) from the field.
Dayton went on a four-minute scoreless streak under eight minutes remaining in the first half that included a 6-0 scoring run. The A-10 opponent did record a 10-0 run of its own as well.
The Flyers finished two of their last 12 from the field to end the half. Overall, the home team shot 40% and made 5-of-16 (31%) three pointers.
RMU only trailed 30-21 at the break but struggled shooting. Spear led the team with seven points and three rebounds. Corbin added six on 2-of-6 shots, both triples.
DaRon Holmes paced Dayton scoring 12 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting.
Andy Toole’s team did hold their own throughout
Corbin and Stephaun Walker were in foul trouble with four each in the game’s final minutes.
Dayton led 34-27 at the under-16 timeout following the resumption of play.
The differential remained similar throughout the second half as Dayton maintained a slim lead.
RMU could not consistently find a rhythm to secure a history. The Colonials shot better in the second half but finished that 20-for-58 (34.5%) and made seven threes. The game remained close with RMU knocking on the door but never breaking through.
Cheeks picked up his scoring and finished with a team high 15 points. Spear totaled a double-registering both 11 points and rebounds.
Corbin made four threes, his only field goals, scoring 12 points but not recording an assist.
Jackson Last struggled Saturday afternoon, shooting 1-for-7 and making one three pointer. Walker added eight points.
Dayton only made 7-of-24 (29%) threes and shot 42% overall but Holmes was too much for the Colonials to handle.
He finished with 18 points, six rebounds, and four assists. Toumani Camara pushed RMU around in the points scoring 11 points and grabbing a game-high 14 rebounds.
RMU begins the Hostilo Hoops Community Classic Friday at 9 p.m. against Mercer in Savanah, Georgia. The Colonials will also face Evansville and South Alabama in the tournament, ending Sunday.