Diplomats Take Down Cougars in Season Opener

Diplomats Take Down Cougars in Season Opener

DALLAS, Pa. – Franklin & Marshall defeated Misericordia 92-84 in men's basketball action in the season opener for both squads. The Diplomats went to 1-0 this season while the Cougars dropped to 0-1. 

The teams battled back-and-forth during the opening minutes of the half with multiple lead changes.  Trailing 24-23, F&M put together a 15-5 run over a five-minute span to take the lead, 39-28, with 2:41 left to play in the half. The Diplomats stayed out front and took a 44-37 lead into the break. 

Misericordia made an early push to start out the second with a 6-2 spurt to come within three, 46-43, at 18:34.  The Cougars made it a one-point game, 54-53, at 15:40, before F&M rattled off nine straight to go ahead 64-53 with 12:37 left to play. The Cougars made another run to come within five, but Matthew Tate netted six straight to give the Diplomats a double-digit lead. F&M led the remainder of the game and hit 6-of-10 from the stripe down the stretch to secure the win.

Brandon Federici led all scorers with 32 points. He hit 9-of-19 from the floor, including 5-for-8 from behind arc. Matthew Tate connected on 10-of-13 from the line and the ended the game with 18 points and five assists while Matt Groll scored 12 points and pulled down six boards. J.C. McGrath finished with a double-double, grabbing 13 rebounds to go along with 11 points.

Four players hit double-figures for Misericordia, led by Tre Fields with 19 points and Noah Rivera with 18. Jason Kenny had 16 points and Stone McCreary had 12.

F&M held a slight 36-32 edge on the glass and converted 17 turnovers into 19 points.

The Diplomats return to action on Friday when F&M hosts Bethany in the second game of the William Marshall Tip-Off Tournament. Lancaster Bible faces Alvernia in the opening game at 5:30 p.m.