Robert Morris plays their best basketball all year, rolls past Milwaukee


Kahliel Spear slams home a dunk in RMU’s 77-53 victory. Photo credit: Justin Newton

By Ethan Morrison, Assistant Sports Editor

MOON TOWNSHIP– After dropping two games on the road, Robert Morris (4-16, 2-9 Horizon) looked to get back on the right foot as they opened up a brief two-game homestand against a Patrick Baldwin Jr.-less Milwaukee (7-14, 5-7) squad.

RMU played some of their best basketball all season, smashing the Panthers 77-53.

Head coach Andy Toole reacted to the team’s blowout victory.

“Probably our best performance all season on the defensive side and in terms of consistency for a full 40 minutes and I thought that we had multiple second efforts,” Toole said. “A lot of guys guarded the ball better and they are a really good team in the paint and they got some opportunities, but for the most part, we did a good job at standing up and being strong in the paint.”

The Colonials got off to a blazing start to begin the game as they went on a 9-3 run to open the contest. Michael Green and Enoch Cheeks knocked down shots from beyond the arc. At the under 16 media timeout, they led by six.

The Panthers killed all of RMU’s momentum as Josh Thomas got a layup to fall and Devon Hancock hit a three-point jumper to knot the game up at nine.

After trading a couple of missed baskets on both sides of the floor Robert Morris once again jumped out to a run as Kahliel Spear started off the action with a two-handed flush. That was then followed by a Green triple and on the ensuing possession, Spear jammed another one home to push the Colonials’ lead to nine points.

Milwaukee finally stopped the bleeding with a Thomas layup and chipped into the nine-point deficit cutting the lead down to seven points with just five minutes to go in the first half.

That did not last long however as the Colonials once again jumped out onto another run, this time a 6-0 run to give them their biggest lead of the game to that point with under two minutes remaining in the half.

RMU continued to pour it on as the first half was winding down as Matt Mayers converted an and-one. At the half, the Colonials took a 16 point lead into the locker room.

Robert Morris was punishing the Panthers on the glass as they outrebounded Milwaukee 29-19 in the first 20 minutes of action.

Spear led the Colonials with 11 points while Hancock led Milwaukee with six.

The Colonials controlled the pace of the game out of the half and stretched their lead all the way out to 19 points by the under 16 media timeout.

Out of the break, Brandon Stone combined two sports into one catching an over-the-shoulder pass like a wide receiver and then bumping the ball back like he was playing volleyball to Spear who jammed it home.

The onslaught continued as Robert Morris poured it on possession after possession. Even Chase Cook got in on the action, hitting a three-point shot mid-way through the second half.

Milwaukee went on a mini-run to cut the lead down to 23 with 3:39 to play in the game, but the comeback effort was just too little too late as Robert Morris still won the game by a sizable margin.

Overall, Robert Morris shot 42 percent from the field and 31 percent from beyond the arc. As for the Panthers, they shot 34 percent from the field and an abysmal eight percent from downtown.

Robert Morris is in action at home again on Saturday when they take on Green Bay at 7:00 p.m.