ALLENTOWN, Pa. – The Haverford College men's basketball team outshot host Muhlenberg from the field, but was unable to make up a 20-5 disadvantage at the free throw line during an 88-79 defeat against the Mules. Muhlenberg attempted 21 more shots at the charity stripe on Wednesday to fuel that point disparity.
Four different Haverford players reached double figures as Jonathan Lang led the Fords with a game-high 16 points. Kahlil Garnes added 15 points, while Jesse Turkson just missed a double-double with 14 points and nine rebounds. Joe Scibelli rounded out the double figure scorers with 11 on the evening. The Mules had six players reach double figures, with Nick Rindock and Erik Weirheim each scoring 15 to lead those efforts.
The Fords shot a blistering 62.1% from the field in the opening half, but still trailed 45-41 at the break. The deficit came in spite of a nearly 14% better mark from the field. The Mules were able to hit seven three-pointers during the first 20 minutes which enabled them to lead by as many as 11 points early on.
However, the Fords answered in the same fashion as three of their final four field goals in the opening half came from beyond the arc. Those treys helped trim the lead to four at the break. Eight of Haverford's nine players who saw playing time during the opening half hit a field goal during that period.
Haverford quickly erased the remaining deficit just two minutes into the second half with a 6-0 run coming out of the break. A steal from Lang, as he finished a layup on the fast break, gave the Fords a 47-45 lead with 17:46 remaining in regulation. The two sides were later deadlocked at 49-all with 16:52 in the half after Turkson got into the lane for two points. Nevertheless, the Mules soon capitalized on a rare cold stretch from the Fords shortly after, going on an 11-0 run following a three-pointer from Joe Hartman to open their largest lead of the night, 67-55.
Muhlenberg held a 12 point lead on three different occasions, but the Fords' hot shooting returned during an 8-0 run that featured six points from Garnes to cut the lead to 71-67 with 7:03 remaining in regulation. Haverford's first free throw of the night from Garnes came at the end of that run. However, that four point difference would prove to be all the closer the Fords got in the remaining playing time as Muhlenberg ultimately held on for an 88-79 win.
Men's basketball will now have exactly one week off before returning to the Gooding '84 Arena next week for a pair of non-conference clashes to close the 2017 portion of the schedule. Up first will be a 7 p.m. tip against Bryn Athyn on Wednesday, December 13. The team closes the month of December on Saturday, December 16 at 1 p.m. against Eastern.