Colonials deliver first loss to Ohio Bobcats

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Robert Morris junior guard Karvel Anderson made his first career start Saturday night.

And once he started, the Colonials never stopped.

Anderson was perfect from the field and scored a career-high 28 points to propel the Colonials to an 84-76 victory against previously unbeaten Ohio University at the Sewall Center.

"The rim just felt like 10-feet wide," Anderson said. "It felt like everything I shot was going to go in."

The Colonials led by as many as 19 points and never trailed the Bobcats, who have made the NCAA tournament two of the past three seasons. Last season, Ohio advanced to the Sweet Sixteen, beating Michigan -- now the No. 3 team in the nation -- in the process.

Robert Morris has defeated Ohio each of the past four seasons.

"It's a great accomplishment," Robert Morris coach Andy Toole said. "I think our guys should take it as something that should excite them."

A junior-college transfer, Anderson has scored in double figures in five of eight games for the Colonials (4-4) this season. He made all 10 shots Saturday night, including eight 3-pointers.

"We just kept going to him, and he just kept hitting," said Robert Morris senior guard Velton Jones.

His 28 points were a season high for any Robert Morris player.

"We lost him early a couple times; he had some clean looks," Ohio coach Jim Christian said. "From there, he got it going."

D.J. Cooper led Ohio with 19 points, nearly leading the Bobcats to an improbable comeback.

Though Robert Morris was in control most of the game, they could never pull away from Ohio (6-1) in the second half. Every time it appeared the Colonials were poised to go on a game-changing run, the Bobcats reeled them back in.

Cooper cut Robert Morris' lead to three points with a 3-pointer with 3:08 remaining and again at 2:17 with a layup in traffic. But Anderson and junior guard Coron Williams hit two 3-pointers in the closing minutes to help seal the victory.

After a sluggish first half, Ohio played with more energy in the second, especially on the offensive glass. After failing to score a second-chance point in the first half, the Bobcats scored 16 in the second.

"In the second half, we didn't have as much energy, and they had energy, and I think that helped them," Jones said. "We didn't have the correct energy that we needed, but we sustained enough."

Robert Morris led, 37-31, at the end of the first half, but Ohio entered halftime with all the momentum after closing the half on a 19-6 run to narrow a once-gaping Robert Morris advantage.

The Colonials had led by as many as 19 points in the first half thanks mostly to a 19-2 run. They led, 31-12, with seven minutes remaining.

Anderson led all scorers with 14 first-half points, going 5 of 5 from the field in 11 minutes.

A barrage of 3-pointers propelled the Colonials to a 14-point lead less than 10 minutes into the game. Anderson went 4 for 4 from 3-point range in the first 10 minutes, and David Appolon sank another 3-pointer as the Colonials surged to a 24-10 advantage.

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Michael Sanserino:, 412-263-1722 or on Twitter @msanserino.


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