Kern Paces Johns Hopkins in 66-55 Win over Muhlenberg
• Score: Johns Hopkins-66, Muhlenberg-55
• Records: JHU (7-0, 3-0 CC) • MC (1-6, 0-3 CC)
• Location: Baltimore, MD • Goldfarb Gym
• The Short Story: Freshman Joey Kern scored a game-high 17 points to lead the Johns Hopkins men’s basketball team to a 66-55 win over visiting Muhlenberg Saturday afternoon.
How it Happened
• Trailing by 12 with 4:10 to play, Muhlenberg’s Matt Gnias drove the paint and hit a layup to spark a quick 6-0 run that spanned just 63 seconds. Sophomore Harry O’Neil answered on the other end with an open layup under the basket to put Hopkins up 62-54. Erik Werheim then hit one of two free throws for the Mules to pull them back within seven with 2:34 on the clock. As it turns out, that was the last point of the game for the visitors.
• Freshman Conner Delaney drove to the basket and scored at the 1:45-mark to make it a nine-point game. The Mules turned the ball over on the ensuing possession and Delaney followed with one of two free throws. After another empty possession by Muhlenberg, Delaney went to the line again and hit one of two shots with 1:18 to go. Neither team would score in the closing minute and Hopkins would take the 66-55 win.
• The teams swapped buckets to open the game and Hopkins led 12-10 at the 14:21-mark. Kern hit a bucket from downtown and senior Kyle Doran and junior Noah Ralby followed with buckets to push the home team to a 19-10 lead.
• JeanLee Baez converted a layup with 11:33 to play and the Mules went on a 10-4 spurt to pull within three less than three minutes later. The lead see-sawed up and down over the ensuing two minutes and Hopkins led 29-24. Ralby then drained a jumper and Kern followed with another three-pointer. Junior Joey Fitzpatrick capped the 6-0 burst with a free throw and just like that the Blue Jays’ lead was 11.
• Buckets by Spencer Duke and Nick Rindock sliced the lead to seven with 3:13 to play. But a Ralby layup, followed by back-to-back buckets from O’Neil gave Hopkins a 41-28 lead at the half.
• Hopkins picked up where it left off at the half and pushed its lead to 17 on consecutive triples from Kern and Doran. Muhlenberg battled back and sliced the deficit to just six with 6:25 to play. The Mules outscored the Blue Jays 14-3 during the run, which was fueled by Baez and Duke.
• Senior Jesse Flannery and junior Michael Gardner sandwiched threes around a pair of Duke free throws and the lead was back to 10. Delaney pushed the lead to 12 with a pair of shots from the charity stripe with 4:17 to play.
What it Means
• Hopkins improves to 42-18 against Muhlenberg and has won two straight and six of the last eight in the series.
• The Blue Jays run their season-opening win streak to seven games, the best start since the 2006-07 squad won its first nine games. Hopkins is also 3-0 to start conference play for the first time since 2011-12.
Inside the Box Score
• Kern scored a career-best 17 points, with 15 of those coming from downtown. He also grabbed five rebounds and two steals. O’Neil just missed his first career double-double with a career-high 15 points and nine boards. Delaney also finished in double figures with 10 points and a game-high five assists.
• Baez paced the Mules with 14 points and nine rebounds. Duke added 12 points and Gnias had 10 points and seven rebounds.
• Hopkins is back in action on Wednesday, December 6 as the Blue Jays travel to Lancaster, PA to take on the Franklin & Marshall Diplomats. Tip-off at the Mayser Center is slated for 8:00 pm.