Anderson sparks bounce-back win

ROBERT MORRIS 88, TEXAS ARLINGTON 81

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Shooters, often inexplicably, have nights when everything feels right, when the basket appears bigger and seemingly every shot -- from the moment it leaves their hands -- feels like it's going in.

Four days removed from a 5-for-17 performance in a 38-point loss to Kentucky, Karvel Anderson had one of those games for Robert Morris. One that, by the end of the game, managed to make a small bit of history.

Anderson scored 24 points and tied his single-game home record with eight 3-pointers as the Colonials rebounded from the lopsided loss to the Wildcats and held on for a 88-81 victory against Texas Arlington Thursday night at Sewall Center.

"Sometimes, you really can't take credit for anything," Anderson said. "It's just one of those nights."

The senior guard made eight of his 11 field goal attempts, 10 of which came from beyond the 3-point arc. With his performance Thursday, he has scored at least 20 points in three of the team's five games this season.

Led by two 3-pointers from Anderson, Robert Morris (3-2) jumped out to a 14-0 lead and held the Mavericks (2-4) scoreless through the opening 3:09. That advantage would later get cut to six points, but it was extended back to 10 by halftime.

In the first 20 minutes, Anderson made six of his seven 3-point attempts, matching the number of field goals the Colonials made as a team in the first half at Kentucky.

However, much of that early momentum from Anderson stalled in the second half as Texas Arlington clawed its way back.

Riding a hot shooter in guard Reger Dowell, the Mavericks began the second half on a 14-6 run and never trailed by more than eight for the remainder of the game.

Holding a two-point edge with 2:23 left, Robert Morris scored 11 of the game's final 16 points and made nine of its final 10 free throws to secure the win.

It was an uneven performance from the Colonials, one in which they got off to a strong start only to see their lead dissipate. But for a team with seven newcomers that's still looking for some sort of rhythm, it was able to get the best possible result -- a win.

"We definitely find ways to make it interesting," coach Andy Toole said.

"There are going to be times this year where we're going to have guys in situations they haven't been in before where we're going to have to help them through it."

Along with Anderson, three other Robert Morris players scored in double figures, a group led by forward Lucky Jones, who scored 15 points and had 10 rebounds.

Dowell, who entered the game as one of the top scorers in Division I at 24.8 points per game, finished with a game-high 26 points on 22 shots. He scored 21 in the second half.

But even though Dowell had the higher scoring output, it was Anderson who made the biggest difference for a team in need of a win.

"I know Dowell had 26 points, but my man to the right, he showed him up tonight," Jones said, motioning to Anderson after the game. "It was a back-and-forth confrontation, but when you're on the losing team, you think you have to do everything by yourself. Even if [Anderson] wanted to shoot 20 shots a night, he still looks for his team.

"That's the best part about him."

Point guard Anthony Myers-Pate added 10 points, 9 assists and 4 rebounds for the Colonials.

Craig Meyer: cmeyer@post-gazette.com and Twitter @CraigMeyerPG.


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