Franklin, Ind. - Franklin College senior Troy Porter (Frankfort, Ind./Frankfort) had a career-high 29 points, but it was not enough as the men's basketball team lost 92-86 to the College of Mount St. Joseph on Saturday at the Spurlock Center. The game was the team's home Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) opener.
Franklin (5-3, 2-1 HCAC) cut a 17-point second-half deficit to four points, 83-79, over the course of four minutes late in the game. A three-point play by senior Bailey Howard (Nashville, Ind./Brown County) made the score 83-79 with 2:33 left. Back-to-back baskets for the visitors extended the lead to 87-79 at the 1:46 mark.
Howard connected on a three pointer with 45 seconds left to bring Franklin within five points, 87-82.
MSJ's Andy Countryman split a pair of free throws and Joel Scudder made two additional free throws to push the lead back to seven points, 90-83, with 20 seconds left. Franklin's Howard made another three pointer with 15 seconds remaining. However, Scudder successfully secured the victory with two free throws with 11 seconds left.
MSJ (5-3, 2-1 HCAC) led 48-43 at the half after closing the period on a 10-3 run over the final three minutes.
Porter led the Franklin attack with 29 points, including 6-of-9 shooting from behind the arc. Howard added 26 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the floor. He made five three pointers in the loss. Sophomore Dion Smith (Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central) scored 13 points and had a team-high six rebounds.
MSJ was led by Mark Allen and Scudder each with 22 points. David Mann added 12 points and eight rebounds. Femi Thompson scored 13 points off the bench. The Lions shot 65.4 percent from the floor in the victory, including making eight of their 12 three-point field goal attempts.
Franklin returns to action on Wednesday, December 18 at 7 p.m. when it travels to in-state opponent Trine University for a non-conference game. Live statistics of the game will be available here. In-game updates will also be available on Twitter (@FCAthletics) and on Facebook (www.facebook.com/FranklinCollegeAthletics).