• Score: Christopher Newport-54, Johns Hopkins-44
• Records: JHU (8-2) • CNU (9-2)
• Location: Newport News, VA • Freeman Center
• The Short Story: Host Christopher Newport won a defensive battle over the Johns Hopkins men’s basketball team, 54-44, on Saturday night in the championship game of the Captains Shootout.
How it Happened
• Hopkins got five straight points from freshman Joey Kern and senior Jesse Flannery to slice CNU’s lead to just three with 1:28 to play in the game. The Captains’ defense shut down the Blue Jays from there to grab the win. The home team went 5-of-6 from the charity stripe, along with a dunk, in the final 66 seconds to secure the title.
• The teams battled from the beginning as the lead changed hands eight times, to go with two ties, in the opening eight minutes. Trailing 12-8 after a Flannery bucket in the paint, Christopher Newport got five straight points from Marcus Carter and a triple from Brock Geiman to go up four at the 10:53-mark.
• The Captains’ lead seesawed up and down over the ensuing four minutes as the teams traded buckets. Holding a three-point advantage following a layup by sophomore Harry O’Neil, Brandon Edmond doubled it was a bucket from downtown with 5:18 to play in the half.
• After a Conner Delaney free throw made it a 27-22 game, Aaron McFarland and Luther Gibbs sandwiched buckets around a Daniel Vila layup to push CNU’s lead to seven with just 1:43 to play. Flannery responded with a three-pointer and then following a McFarland turnover, Delaney drained a three from the top of the key at the buzzer to make it a 31-30 game at the break.
• Vila got the first bucket of the second half at the 16:35-mark to put Hopkins on top, 32-31. It was the Blue Jays’ first lead since 12:13 remaining in the first half. Unfortunately, it didn’t last long as Spencer Marin answered with a layup just 27 seconds later to swing the lead back to CNU.
• The lead once again seesawed up and down for the Captains with the teams trading buckets over a 10-minute span. Leading 41-39, CNU got back-to-back threes from Geiman and Carter and just like that the lead was eight with 4:27 to play. Hopkins kept fighting, with those five unanswered points from Kern and Flannery, but could get no closer than the three points.
What it Means
• Tonight’s game was the first-ever meeting between the Blue Jays and the Captains.
• Junior Michael Gardner was named to the all-tournament team for Hopkins.
Inside the Box Score
• Vila was the only Blue Jay to finish in double figures as he punched up 11 points to go with seven blocks and three assists.
• Delaney just missed a double-double as he finished with nine points and nine rebounds while also handing out three assists. Gardner finished second on the team with eight boards to go with a pair of steals.
• Carter led the Captains with a game-high 13 points, while Marin chipped in 10 points. McFarland grabbed a team-high nine rebounds, while Gibbs had four blocks.
For the Record
• Vila set the tournament and Freeman Center (by an opponent) records for blocks in a game with seven. His seven blocks are also a career high and one shy of the Hopkins’ single-game record. His 11 combined blocks in the two games are one shy of the tournament record. Vila now has 66 career blocks, which ranks 12th in program history.
• Hopkins is back at Goldfarb Gym for the first time in 32 days as the Blue Jays host the Goucher Gophers on Wednesday, January 3. Tip-off for the non-conference contest is slated for 7:00 pm.