JACKSONVILLE, Ill. – Despite holding the MacMurray starting five to only 27 combined points Saturday afternoon, the Panthers dropped their second consecutive SLIAC contest.
In the loss Greenville again got big offensive production from Senior Markeith Brown. The Portland, OR product played a team-high 27 minutes in the tilt while dropping in a game-high 24 points on 10-15 shooting. Senior guard Ben Giertz also delivered a key contribution, posting 11 points and hitting 3-of-6 from behind the arc.
The Black & Orange came out with poise in the fifth contest of their scheduled six-game road stand, weathering a series of Highlander runs and holding a 26-22 lead with four minutes remaining in the first half. However, GC’s lead would be short lived due to clutch bench play from MacMurray guards Dylan Guthrie and Luke Bishop. The two combined for 12 of the Highlanders last 16 points in the closing minutes of the first half, and served the visiting Panthers with a 30-34, four point deficit heading into intermission.
In second half action Greenville again showcased their resolve, battling back and taking a 43-41 lead at the 15:49 mark on a Jonas McBride jump shot. The Panthers extended the lead to four a minute later as Brown netted a 15-footer to give the road squad a 45-41 margin. But déjà vu again caught the Panthers as Guthrie exploded for the hosts with 11 points in the following four minutes to retake the lead and extend the deficit to as many as nine. MacMurray knocked down 12 of their 14 free throw attempts in the final three minutes to seal the 83-75 victory and deal Greenville the tough road loss.
Guthrie led the Highlanders offensively, dropping in a team-high 24 points in only 14 minutes of play. The guard hit 5-of-6 from the floor and netted 12-of-14 from the stripe.
With the loss Greenville falls to 2-4 (SLIAC 0-2) and will return to court on Tuesday, December 6 as they again go on the road to play St. Louis Christian at 7:00 in St. Louis.