INDIANA, Pa. – The Urbana University men’s basketball team jumped out to a 12-4 lead against Pitt-Johnstown, but the Blue Knights couldn’t hold on in a 90-85 setback in the second game of the S&T Regional Bank Atlantic Region Challenge.
Four Blue Knights reached double figures in the scoring column, led by freshman forward Jahmere Howze, who recorded his first collegiate double-double with a game-high 24 points and 12 rebounds.
Howze shot 10-of-14 from the field and went 4-of-8 from the free-throw line in 31 minutes.
Senior guard Mike Newton tied his career high of 22 points on 8-of-9 shooting, as the Blue Knights shot 52 percent (34-of-66) from the field during the entire game.
Newton, who played a team-high 38 minutes, hit both of his 3-pointers, grabbed six rebounds and dished out a team-high four assists.
In addition, freshman forward Austin Adams registered a career-high 15 points and sophomore guard Carlas Jackson chipped in with 13 points.
UU (0-2) went up 6-0 less than two minutes into the game, and extended that lead to 12-4 on Newton layup with 16:20 left in the first half.
UPJ would respond, though, and led by as many as nine when it pulled ahead 32-23 with 5:19 remaining in the opening frame. The Mountain Cats took a 43-37 advantage into halftime after a made jumper with one second left.
Howze made six of his seven field-goal attempts with 15 points in the first half. As a team, the Blue Knights shot a blistering 63 percent (15-of-24) over the first 20 minutes.
In the second half, UU got down by as many as 11 points with 12:30 left, but a Carlas Jackson 3-pointer ignited a 14-4 Blue Knight run to make it a one-point game. UU trailed 62-61 with just under eight minutes remaining.
However, that was as close as UU would get the rest of the way.
UPJ went up 11 again with 57 seconds left, but the Blue Knights made it interesting as an Adams layup with 10 seconds to go made it a one-possession game with the score 88-85. But, two made free throws sealed it for the Mountain Lions.
UU outscored UPJ, 44-40, in the paint and 14-8 on second-chance points, while outrebounding the Mountain Cats, 39-29.
Up next for UU is the home opener at the Grimes Center. The Blue Knights will host Salem International on Wednesday with a 7 p.m. scheduled tipoff.