Hazleton, Pa. - The Nittany Lions picked up their third win in the Penn State University Athletic Conference on Friday night in the Dr. Thomas M. Caccese gymnasium with a resounding 61-29 win over Penn State DuBois. Hazleton's defense dominated the game to the tune of a 59-32 advantage in the rebound column and holding the visitors to just 17.3 percent shooting from the field.
Hazleton jumped out early with triples from freshmen Nick Ruggeri (Mountain Top, Pa.) and Donovan Cumberbatch (Brooklyn, Pa.), the first of nine three point baskets made on the night for the Lions. DuBois managed to keep pace in the first half and trailed by only one point with just over 12 minutes remaining in the period but the Hazleton offense was about to heat up. Back to back baskets from senior Andy Kwiatkowski (Gaithersburg, Md.) sparked Hazleton on a 13-0 run. Over the next two minutes of action, Kwiatkowski, along with freshmen Paul Feisel (Slocum, Pa.) and Aiden Wiktor (Danville, Pa.) connected on shots from beyond the arc to give Hazleton some breathing room with a 26-12 cushion. Dubois battled back to close the gap to eight points with two minutes to play in the half but that's as close as the visitors would get for the remainder of the night.
A solid defensive effort helped Hazleton to a 30-18 lead at halftime but the Lions would continue to hold Dubois to one and done opportunities for the rest of the game. Hazleton limited DuBois to just one field goal in the first 15 minutes of the final period, bolstering their lead to as many as 37 points over that period of time. Hazleton got offensive contributions from eight different players during the second half including a 12 point effort by Feisel to run away for the comfortable victory.
Kwiatkowski got it done at both ends of the court on Friday night, leading the Lions with a double-double consisting of 18 points and 10 rebounds with three steals to his credit. Paul Feisel added 15 points that included three makes from long range while pulling down nine rebounds in the win and the Lions got fine complimentary efforts on the glass from Aiden Wiktor and sophomore Connor Soo (Lamar, Pa.). Soo went for six points and 10 rebounds respectively with Wiktor posting a game high 12 rebounds and three blocked shots on the defensive end.
Next up: The Lions make the trek out west on Saturday to face Penn State Greater Allegheny on Saturday, December 4 for a 5:00 p.m. match up.