BY CHRIS HOOKER, STAFF WRITER
In back-to-back games this week, Susquehanna found themselves in a position to win as time came to a close. And yet, in two straight, the Crusaders fell short, in losses in Elizabethtown and against Penn State-Harrisburg.
“It’s frustrating,” freshman guard Luke Cable said. “We had the lead in both games late, but both teams got hot at the wrong time, and they made the right shots down on their end.”
At Elizabethtown (1-4), Susquehanna (1-4) led 51-48 with 6:27 left in the game. Back-and-forth lead and possession changes tied the game up at 64 apiece with eight seconds remaining. Elizabethtown’s Ben Cable sank a jumper as time expired to hand the Crusaders their third loss on the season.
Luke Cable scored 21 points on 17 shots, including shooting 42 percent from behind the arc.
“Mentally, down the stretch, we have to be more confident,” he said. “Once the other team starts doing well, we can’t lose our focus and panic at the wrong time. We have to keep doing what we’ve been doing all game.”
Junior point guard Mike Perillo also had a strong performance in the loss, scoring 12 points, recording seven assists and grabbing six steals.
“We still need to focus on playing possession by possession,” Perillo said. “We need to take it one possession at a time and start buckling down.”
Susquehanna 67, PSU-Harrisburg 72
Susquehanna hoped to follow up that performance with a win, but unfortunately couldn’t come up with the win at home two nights later against Penn State-Harrisburg.
Again, with 6:08 left in the game, Susquehanna had a lead, this time the score being 60-55 after a made layup from Seldon. Penn State-Harrisburg (2-2) then went on an 11-0 run to take the lead and Susquehanna could never come back.
Perillo scored six points and recorded seven assists in the loss. The team received support from their bench, which put up 36 of the Crusaders’ 67 points but struggled in shooting the long-ball, as they hit just 23.8 percent of their threes.
Susquehanna will play two games on the road on Saturday and Monday, the first of which being against ranked conference foe Scranton and the second will be against Misericordia.
“We definitely need to get wins,” Cable said. “We’ve started off 1-4 and no one really expected that. Scranton will be tough, especially being on the road. I think we can get one, maybe two wins out of the weekend, but we are definitely hoping for two.”
Perillo also admitted that he needs to make sure he is fulfilling his duties as the leader of that offense.
“It’s important for me to play my game, but it’s also important to make sure everyone is doing their role and making sure everyone is playing their game,” Perillo said. “I need to be a leader on the floor.”
One of the players Perillo is expected to lead, Cable, was just recently awarded the Pepsi/SAAC Rookie of the Month for November after his standout performance in the Pepsi Tip-Off Tournament with 12 points against Penn College.
“That’s definitely something that makes me feel good about myself,” Cable said of the honor.