PHILADELPHIA – The Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University) men's basketball team (4-5) dropped a one-point affair to the Kutztown Golden Bears (4-1) on Tuesday evening from the Gallagher Center by a final of 67-66.
Trailing by nine at halftime, the Rams tied it up midway through the second half but could not come away with the nonconference win against the PSAC school.
Jefferson had the ball trailing by one with six seconds on the clock and got a contested three-point shot off at the buzzer that did not fall in the Rams' favor.
Senior Yevgen Sakhniuk scored a game-high 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting including six rebounds. Sakhniuk also went 3-of-4 from the free-throw line.
Sophomore Josh Bradanese finished with 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the floor including four made three-pointers and five rebounds.
Freshman Alexander Gorton turned in 14 points and six rebounds.
Sophomore Kylan Guerra had 10 points on the evening with four rebounds and four assists.
Jefferson trailed 41-30 at the end of the first half. Bradanese led all scorers with 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting.
With Kutztown up 16-10, Jefferson closed the gap as the two teams were tied at 18-18 with around 10 minutes to play in the half. The two squads were going back and forth before the Golden Bears went on a 16-2 run over five minutes near the end of the half (6:16 to 1:16), going up as many as 12.
Bradanese and the Rams came out of halftime, trimming the nine-point deficit down to five around the 15-minute mark. An 8-0 run helped Jefferson tie it up at 52-52 with under 12 minutes to play. The teams were last tied at 54-54; the Rams never took the lead in the game outside of the opening minute of the contest.
Jefferson got within one with 1:24 left when Gorton forced a turnover and turned it into points on the other end.
Kutztown outrebounded Jefferson 43-28. The Golden Bears had 15 offensive boards which converted to 16 second-chance points, an area they outscored the Rams 16-6.
Jefferson forced 15 Kutztown turnovers and led points off turnovers 18-12.
Jefferson Men's Basketball now begins conference play on the road at Georgian Court at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 2.