NORTH CANTON, Ohio – Penn State Altoona men's basketball took a 119-76 loss to Division II opponent #25 Walsh University on Saturday afternoon in the Alumni Arena.
The game was an exhibition contest for Penn State Altoona (2-0) and will not count toward the Lions' record or statistics. It was, however, a countable regular season game for Walsh (5-0).
"Today's contest was a great opportunity for us as a program to compete against one of the top Division II programs in the nation," said Penn State Altoona head coach David McGreal. "Winning or losing really wasn't an issue today. This was an exhibition for us, and we used it as a chance to work on some things in live action against quality competition."
Cameron Gardner-Nicholson (Philadelphia, PA/Boys' Latin Charter) scored a team-high 18 points for the Lions while grabbing seven rebounds and blocking a pair of shots. Robbie Hicks (Rockledge, FL/Rockledge) added 17 points, while Nate Gillen (Johnstown, PA/Central Cambria) scored 13 points off the bench. Andruw Harman (Chesapeake, VA/Great Bridge) posted game-highs with 15 rebounds and three blocks.
Walsh's JT Shumate led all scorers with 21 points to go along with 10 boards, and Darryl Straughter put up 20 points.
"We can take away some positives from this game, such as scoring more points against Walsh than any other team has scored against them thus far this year," said McGreal. "Our defense struggled at times against their size and shooting ability, but when we executed defensively, we were able to get stops."
In addition to facing a challenging opponent, the Lions' weekend trip to eastern Ohio allowed the program to take advantage of opportunities for team bonding activities, such as visiting the National Football League Hall of Fame in Canton.
"One of the best parts of the trip was getting a chance to take the whole team to the NFL Hall of Fame," said McGreal. "It is important to me that my guys get opportunities to travel and see things while playing for me. It's a big part of developing a positive program culture. Now, it's time to get ready for La Roche."
Penn State Altoona men's basketball returns to regular season action this Tuesday, November 26, when the Lions will open their Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference schedule on the road at La Roche University. Tipoff for that game is set for 6:00 p.m.