The (15) Sinclair Men’s Basketball team (10-1) traveled to Philadelphia Saturday for a rare out of conference match-up against the University of Pennsylvania JV team. Leading the series 2-1, Sinclair was able to win its 3rd straight game against their Ivy League opponent 65-63, improving the series record to 3-1.
In what has turned out to be a non-conference match every three years, Sinclair has been playing the University of Penn in the “Cathedral of College Basketball” (The Palestra) since 2005. This trip is part of the Men’s Basketball Player Enhancement Program (PEP). The program was developed as part of a long-range goal to assist these young men and help them grow both on and off the court through guest lectures and off-site visits. This trip gave these young men a chance to play an Ivy League school as well as catch some historical sites. Some of these sites included a visit to the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the National Constitution Center, and a post-game victory cheesesteak.
Sinclair started cold as they struggled to shake off the 9 hour bus ride from Dayton to Philly. Penn took a 6-0 lead as they controlled the tempo, until Deiontay Walters hit a three in transition to get the visitors on the board. It was evident from the start that Penn was going to control the game as they would work deep into the shot clock on offense. Sinclair did not get many transition opportunities as the Quakers only sent one to the offensive glass and rotated 4 back. Averaging almost 86 points per game, the Ivy League host was going to do everything they could to take the air out of the ball and make this a ½ court game. In the lowest scoring 1st half of the season on both sides of the ball, Sinclair held Penn to 21 point while scoring a season low 28 points.
Penn got their outside game going to start off the second half and was able to cut their deficit to two (36-34) with under 13 minutes to play. Penn tied it up at 36 all with 10:30 left in the game. After trading baskets and with about 8 minutes to play, Marquez Carpenter-Mathis scored at the rim and converted the free throw (47-44) for an old fashion three point play and the final lead change of the game. Charles Sweatt-Washington hit a turnaround jump shot from the baseline to put Sinclair up 59-50 and then Conner Myslowski got an easy fast break bucket and Sinclair held the led 61-52 with 2:30 to play. During the last two minutes, Penn got hot from the three point line, knocking down jumpers to get within 2 as time expired. The 65-63 victory was Sinclair’s 10th victory on the year and the 3rd straight in the Palestra.
Scoring leaders for Sinclair included Marquez Carpenter-Mathis (6-6/FR – Western Hills H.S., Cincinnati, OH) with 15 points. Deiontay Walters (5-10/FR – Princeton H.S., Cincinnati, OH) scored 13 points and handed out 8 assists, while Trace Cureton (6-4/SO – Cathedral H.S., Indianapolis, IN) recorded 12 points.
Sinclair will return home on December 18 when they will host Miami Univ. - Middletown. Game time will be at 7:30 and will be on the Downtown Dayton campus in Building 8.