Hilltoppers remain undefeated after late game scare

By Kendrick Jackson, Advertising Manager

The West Liberty University men’s basketball avoided their first loss of the season after escaping a late comeback by the Fighting Falcons of Fairmont State. Our Hilltoppers pulled out a 106-100 victory, still preserving their perfect season on Saturday, Dec. 9 at the ASRC.

Redshirt freshman guard, Garrett Cook, started the game hot for the Fighting Falcons, going 5-5 from the three-point line for 15 points early in the first period. Cook would cool off in the second half, and finished the game with 17 points.

WLU guard, Dan Monteroso, was the go-to man for the Hilltoppers in the first period. Monteroso scored 21 points in the first half, giving West Liberty a 62-50 lead at break. Monteroso ended things with a game-high 27 points, and added four blocks on the defensive end.

The late comeback by Fairmont State came in the middle of the second half when junior guard, Jason Jolly, erupted for five consecutive-made three-pointers, cutting the Hilltoppers lead to only six points.

However, No. 7 West Liberty proved to be too much for the Fairmont State, and closed out the victory. Jolly ended the game with a team-high 19 points and also added six assists. This gives the Fighting Falcons their third loss of the season.

Fairmont State came onto the hilltop on a three-game winning streak, including a huge win against No. 9 Wheeling Jesuit. The Fighting Falcons secured a 78-74 win, handing the Cardinals their first lost of the season.

Looking ahead, West Liberty only has two more games before the new year. WLU will continue its homestand as our Hilltoppers will face-off against two out-of-state opponents.

King University (Tenn.) will travel to the hilltop for a non-conference matchup on Wednesday, Dec. 13. Currently, the Tornado of King University (Tenn.) has a record of 5-3 for the season. Junior guard, Jordan Floyd, leads the team in scoring, averaging 21 points-per-game.

The following week, the University of the District of Columbia travels to West Liberty for a non-conference matchup on Tuesday, Dec. 19. The Firebirds of the University of D.C. are currently on a six-game losing streak, and have only won one game this season.

The second half of the season resumes Thursday, Jan. 4, when our Hilltoppers travel to Institute, W.Va. for a Mountain East Conference game against West Virginia State.

For more updates and stats on Hilltopper basketball, please visit WLU’s athletic website.

Photo credit: Hilltoppersports.com.