The Shepherd University men’s basketball team started off the season strong with wins over Lock Haven University and Kutztown University.
Shepherd opened their season against Lock Haven on Friday, Nov. 14, where they knocked off the Bald Eagles by the score of 81-63. The Rams held a 47-23 halftime lead.
Senior forward Morgan McDonald recorded a double-double, scoring 21 points and grabbing 15 rebounds. Junior forward Ryan McTavish made his debut with the team, scoring 12 points and four rebounds. McTavish transferred from Presbyterian.
Free throws plagued Lock Haven, as they went 7-20 from the free throw line. Shepherd only missed two free throws, going 17-19.
The following night, the Rams added their second consecutive victory with an 80-75 win over Kutztown. Senior guard Austin Cunningham had 26 points and five assists. Freshman guard Skylar Roman added 16 points off the bench to be the team’s second leading scorer while adding four assists.
The Rams did a great job of sharing the ball, notching 20 assists as a team. The Golden Bears had 13.
Shepherd held an exhibition game against West Virginia University before the season started and lost by the score 109-60. This was expected, as Shepherd is a division two school, while WVU is a division one school.
“We’re excited to see them,” said Head Coach Justin Namolik before the game, “it’ll be an experience.”
That’s all it was, an experience. Division one schools have players that are simply bigger, faster and stronger. It did not seem to hurt the team morale, as they would go on to win their first two games of the regular season.
The Rams will travel be on the road for the next two games, as they go up against Davis & Elkins College. They will then play their first conference matchup against Glenville State.