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La Roche Holds Off Penn State Altoona to Win Eighth Straight

La Roche Holds Off Penn State Altoona to Win Eighth Straight

ALTOONA, PA -- The men's basketball team held off a second half rally by Penn State Altoona to down the Lions 79-75 in road conference action on Saturday. The win is their eighth straight and they improve to a perfect 6-0 in the AMCC.

The Redhawks had to overcome a slow start that saw them trailing 24-11 halfway through the first half. Eighteen of Altoona's first twenty-four points came off layups and La Roche got back into it by limiting easy baskets inside. 

The Redhawks responded with a 27-8 run to swing the momentum in their direction. La Roche established itself inside over the course of the run and every point came within feet of the basket or on free throws. 

The home and away squads then traded baskets as the Redhawks entered the half ahead 44-38. Both teams shot well in the first half with Altoona converting at a 48% clip and La Roche 47%. RayQuan Phifer scored 15 first half points to lead the Redhawks.

La Roche built their lead up to nine early in the second half. Altoona needed an answer and rallied on their home court. They began to chip away at the Redhawk lead and caught them to tie it at 64-64 with about six minutes left. 

Evan Bonnaure buried a three on the next possession and a few possessions later Arnes Bajgora drained one to give La Roche some breathing room.

Altoona had a shot to get within a bucket late but their three-pointer came up short and the Redhawks hung on.

Bajgora was terrific finishing with 22 points, 6 rebounds and 3 blocks. Phifer had 16 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assist and 5 steals. Abreu and Bonnaure each had 13 points in the win.

La Roche returns to the Fitness Center on Wednesday when they host the defending conference champs. Pitt Greensburg is winless on the season.