STEUBENVILLE, Ohio— By the end of Sunday's game against the visiting D'Youville College Spartans, the Franciscan University Baron basketball team was forced to play with only four players due to four out of its eight active players fouling out. The Barons put up their biggest offensive night of the season but still fell to the Spartans, 100-86.
"One thing I love about this team is that we are persistent," said head coach John Lamanna. "We continue to compete. Responding the way we did today after yesterday's game speaks to the character of the guys in our program."
One player Lamanna reference specifically was Frank Murray. Murray played the full 40 minutes and notched his career-highs in points and rebounds with 21 and 13, respectively.
"Frank [Murray] played great," Lamanna noted, "and he is starting to develop into the player that he can be. This afternoon was a great example of his work ethic. He has worked a lot on improving his game and he is beginning to see the fruits of his labor."
Freshman Caleb Knorr had arguably his best game of the season in a 21-point, five-rebound, and two-block effort. Fellow freshman Nolan Albrecht had 20 points and eight rebounds, despite fouling out of the game with more than 13 minutes left in the second half.
"I'm still optimistic about our season regardless of what has transpired up to this point," Coach Lamanna added. "Today was the halfway point in our season, and for us to start playing our best basketball right now is exciting. I was very proud to coach every single one of those guys tonight."
The Barons host Penn State Altoona on Wednesday, Jan. 11. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.