Kearney's double-double leads CUA past Carnegie Mellon
WASHINGTON – Chris Kearney registered a double-double with a career-high 22 points and 11 rebounds to lead CUA to a 62-50 win over Carnegie Mellon on Wednesday evening inside the DuFour Center. The victory keeps the Cardinals unbeaten at 5-0, while the Tartans fall to 3-3.
After the Tartans took an early 3-0 lead, CUA ran off eight straight points, capped by a Kearney layup to surge in front 8-3 with 17:14 to play in the opening half.
Billy Donovan's trifecta at the 14:23 mark gave the Cardinals a 13-8 advantage, but Christian Manoli answered with a jumper for Carnegie Mellon to pull the visitors within three.
With 10:55 to go before halftime, Derek Puhalksi hit Kearney on a fastbreak for a layup and the Cardinals were on top 19-12.
A Nate Koenig basket and Shawn Holmes jumper pushed CUA's lead to 10, and after Holmes sank two free throws at the 5:07 mark, the Cardinals were in front 32-19.
CUA closed out the half with three straight baskets and took a 40-23 advantage into the locker room.
Kearney's layup early in the second pushed the lead to 19, but the Tartans responded with four straight points to make the score 42-27.
After both teams went nearly three minutes without a point, Kearney splashed a jumper at the 14:30 mark to put CUA in front by 17.
Carnegie Mellon ran off eight straight points in a span of 1:23 to get within 48-39 with 9:12 to play, but two Kearney free throws pushed CUA's lead back to double digits.
The Tartans got to within eight on a Christian Manoli jumper with 4:39 on the clock, but Holmes hit a jumper for CUA and Puhalksi sank two free throws to give the Cardinals a 59-47 lead with only 1:02 remaining.
CUA dominated the Tartans inside the paint, outscoring the visitors by a 34-16 margin. The Cardinals finished with a 44-29 advantage on the glass, led by Kearney's 11 and five other players with four apiece.
Donovan and Puhalski led CUA in assists with three, while Holmes and Darrell Carroll finished with eight points each.
Carnegie Mellon was led in scoring by Riley and Manoli with 12 points apiece, but CUA once again did a terrific job defensively, forcing the Tartans into a 31% shooting performance. For the season the Cardinals are holding teams to 62.6 points per game on 38% shooting.
CUA opens Landmark Conference play on Saturday evening when the Cardinals welcome Goucher to the DuFour Center for a 5:30 p.m. tip. The game is part of a CUA basketball doubleheader, with the women's game vs. Goucher to follow at 7:30.