Last-place Detroit bests YSU

— Through 11 games across five seasons and two head coaches, Youngstown State still hasn’t figured out Detroit Mercy.

The Horizon League basement dweller got the better of the Penguins for a 94-84 win Friday night at Beeghly Center. YSU’s last win against the Titans came on Jan. 18, 2014.

“I don’t know. It just seems the same way every year,” senior guard Cameron Morse said. “They come out at halftime making shots and making plays and we just don’t find a way to pick it back up,”

Detroit (8-20, 4-11) leads the League in 3-point attempts and they relied on that shot Friday night. That shot didn’t work for the Titans in the first half as they were two for 11, but the second half was another story.

Three of the Titans’ first four buckets were 3-pointers as they opened the second half with a 13-2 run. The Penguins (8-21, 6-10) responded with an 8-2 run and got as close as six points from tying the lead, but got no closer.

Detroit’s top player, redshirt-junior guard Kameron Chapman, had a game-high 26 points and 11 rebounds to lead five of his teammates who also scored in double figures. His counterparts at YSU, Morse and Braun Hartfield, did not have a good night. While Morse tied with Tyree Robinson for a team-high 17 points, he was five of 12 shooting, including going two of seven from 3. Hartfield was two of nine from the floor for five points, five rebounds and five turnovers.

“When your best players struggle, your team is going to struggle. You have to give Detroit a lot of credit, they did a tremendous job and it wasn’t one guy. They understand Cam averaged 25 points in these last three or four games and they team guarded him,” coach Jerrod Calhoun said. “We’ve to get Braun going, he’s really struggled and most sophomores have that sophomore slump. The way you get out of slumps is to get in the gym and work. Shoot until your arms fall off and get in the weight room and get stronger. That’s what he has to decide to do.”

Calhoun also suggested Robinson needed more time in the gym. His 17 points off the bench was efficient for the 17 minutes he played, but still left Calhoun wanting.

“We wanted to play him more and more minutes, but at like the eight-minute mark [in the second half], he says, ‘Coach, I need three minutes,’ Three minutes? I said, ‘In three minutes, this game could be over,’ ” Calhoun said. “I said, ‘As soon as you’re ready, put yourself back in.’ That’s our rule. You play hard and you sub yourself in. He did that a few times and I’ve rewarded him.

“We got him physicals. We got him checked out from top to bottom. He has to get in better shape to help our team, but I thought he gave us everything he had.”

Naz Bohannon turned in a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds.

YSU goes from worst to first on the schedule with a trip to Northern Kentucky — the Horizon League’s top team — on Monday.

“They’re going to try and beat us by 30. They’re trying to win a Horizon League title,” Calhoun said. I don’t think the NIT is in their vocabulary. They’re going for a title and we have to respond.”

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