Khari Griffin, Contributing Writer
ROCK HILL, S.C. – Following a big win Tuesday night against Lane College, the Maroon Tigers made yet another statement in the 2020 SIAC men’s basketball tournament. For the second game in a row, five Morehouse starters put up double-digit points Thursday. With momentum like this, there is no telling where things may lead in the next couple of days.
For now, the Morehouse College basketball team will continue to enjoy their stay in Rock Hill. Building upon their 15-point win last night against the Dragons, the Maroon Tigers sent the Paine Lions packing after a 72-54 victory. With nearly 20 points separating the two by halftime, this matchup was far from a cat fight.
Now, as the Maroon Tigers move on to the semifinals to face Albany State tonight, they hope to get the last laugh in the tournament for the first time since 2003. This game matches teams with almost equal records: Morehouse 16-12 (11-8 SIAC) vs. Albany State 16-13 (12-7 SIAC). This season, Albany State won 80-72 at Morehouse and the Maroon Tigers won 59-50 at Albany State.
As Morehouse shot 56% from the 3-point line and 78% from the free-throw line against Paine, their game was crisp on all areas of the floor. Honorable mentions include sophomores Olisa Akonobi and Sterling Jordan as they both put up 10-plus points and nine rebounds combined.
However, it was the upperclassmen who stole the show. Senior guard Michael Olmert lit up the Rock Hill gymnasium with 17 points, while fellow senior guard Robert Andrews put up 13. As usual, senior forward Tremell Gooden dominated the paint with a double-double in points (10) and rebounds (11).
“When you got five to six players in double figures, they can’t just key in on one guy,” coach Grady Brewer said.
This is exactly what happened Thursday night as the Maroon Tigers ended a three-game losing streak against the Lions.
“It’s a gorilla off my back,” Brewer said after finally getting the last laugh against Paine.