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Employees Pull Away From Students in Hardwood Action

The victors are joined by coach Allie Kennell, whose career record goes to 1-0.
The victors are joined by coach Allie Kennell, whose career record goes to 1-0.
Chris Howard prepares an inbound play.
Chris Howard prepares an inbound play.
Student MVP Jeremy Rall shows off his plaque ...
Student MVP Jeremy Rall shows off his plaque …
... and puts on his "game face" with teammates.
… and puts on his “game face” with teammates.

The staff/faculty team was ready for revenge at Monday night’s basketball rematch against a student squad. The students started the game strong as Jeremy Rall connected on two quick 3-pointers, but Ryan Callahan answered with a few treys of his own for the employee team. The game was back-and-forth early on, both teams looking to quickly pull in front. The staff/faculty team went on a small run when Tyler Mensch and John McNichol hit a pair of 3-pointers. Not to be outdone, the students scratched and clawed to stay in the game; Ben Sosa and Joey Cassidy kept them close until the half. Rall was fouled while attempting to make a buzzer-beating half-court shot, but only made one of three free throws to keep the staff/faculty team up 43-33 at the midpoint. The staff/faculty team started on a hot streak as Scott Kennell scored the first six points of the second half to expand the lead. Nathaniel Brown also caught fire and the students resumed their comeback. The staff/faculty was not going to let the game stay close, however; Chris Howard and Sean Stout were “monsters on the glass” and some pretty passing by Matt Blymier helped the staff up its lead to 15 with five minutes remaining. The students gave it one last effort and got within five points, but Kennell and Callahan ran the fast break perfectly, increased the staff/faculty lead and ultimately won the game, 78-66. Rall led all scorers with 30 points and was the game’s Most Valuable Player. The rest of the student scoring was: Brown, 11; Cassidy and Sosa, 10; Matt Dimillio, 3; Rantz Mahafey, 2 and five fouls; and Jared Mahaffey had no points and four rebounds. The staff/faculty team was led by Callahan’s 28; Kennell had 20; Mensch, 12; Stout, 7; Howard, 6; McNichol, 5; and Blymier added five steals, nine assists and leadership on the floor.
Game summary and photos by Jeremy R. Bottorf, coordinator of intramural sports and campus recreation