LEWISBURG, Pa. – Junior guard Malcolm Miller (Laytonsville, Md.) scored a career-high 19 points and pulled down nine rebounds, but the Holy Cross men's basketball team was defeated by Bucknell 61-57 at Sojka Pavilion. Miller hit eight of 13 field goal attempts on the afternoon, including both of his shots from three-point range. The Crusaders fall to 7-9 on the season and 1-3 in the Patriot League with the loss, while the Bison improve to 8-7 overall and 3-1 in the conference.
Junior guard Justin Burrell (Dumfries, Va.) finished the game with 13 points and three assists, while freshman guard Anthony Thompson (Glenn Dale, Md.) added 10 points, six rebounds and four steals. The Bison were led by Ben Brackney with 13 points and four rebounds.
Bucknell opened the game with a layup by Steven Kaspar, but Holy Cross scored the next eight points to claim the lead. The Crusaders were still up by six points (15-9) a few minutes later, when they used an 11-4 spurt to extend their lead to 13 points (26-13) with 6:07 remaining before the break. But Holy Cross then went cold from the field, and Bucknell scored the next 13 points to tie the score at 26-26. The teams eventually went into the locker room tied 29-29 at halftime.
The Bison started the second half with a quick 7-0 run, to claim a seven-point lead (36-29). A few minutes later, the Crusaders responded with a 9-0 spurt, pulling back in front by two points (40-38). Neither team would lead by more than three points for the next several minutes, and Holy Cross would eventually hold a 55-52 advantage with 4:34 left to play. But Bucknell would then score the next six points to claim the lead for good, 58-55. The Bison were up by two points (59-57) with less than 10 seconds to play, when a three-point attempt by Burrell was off the mark to allow Bucknell to hold on for the win.
The Crusaders made just 38.7 percent (24 of 62) of their field goal attempts and 50.0 percent (four of eight) on their free throws on the day, while Bison made 44.9 percent (22 of 49) of their shots from the floor and 86.7 percent (13 of 15) of their foul shots.
Holy Cross returns to action on Wednesday, Jan. 15, when travels to Army for a 7:00 p.m. game.