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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
The Observer

Saints' skid continues in return to nonconference play

The 3-0 start to the season for Holy Cross men's basketball feels like a distant memory now. The Saints entered the Thanksgiving holiday on a three-game losing streak, highlighted by double-digit losses in their first two conference games of the season. They returned to nonconference action on Saturday for a clash with No. 17 Huntington.

But for the second straight season, the Saints were no match for the Foresters. Huntington hammered Holy Cross at home 94-63 a year ago. Hitting the road only slightly diminished their dominance, as the Foresters won 81-54 to deal the Saints their fourth consecutive defeat.

Huntington dominated the game right from the get-go. Holy Cross junior forward Jordan Montrose scored the game's opening basket, only for the next six field goals to belong to the Foresters (in addition to four made free throws). Huntington stretched its lead to 10 less than seven minutes into the game and never let the Saints get within single digits again. Holy Cross was nearly doubled up in the first 20 minutes at 40-21, making just nine field goals in the opening half.

The Saints offense started to click in the second half. Junior guard Justin O'Neal led the way with 17 points on an efficient 6-13 shooting performance that included a 3-4 clip from deep. Senior guard Isaiah Cabrera was the lone other Saint to reach double figures, tallying 16 points off the bench. Sophomore guard AJ Roseman corralled a team-best 10 rebounds as well.

However, the early deficit proved too much to overcome. The Foresters maintained a healthy lead throughout the contest and improved to 5-0 all-time against Holy Cross with the victory. The loss was also the Saints' first at home this season, dropping them to 3-1 at McKenna Arena.

The Saints return to action and conference play on Wednesday against Indiana University South Bend. The contest tips off at 7:30 p.m.

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