In a tightly contested Centennial Conference matchup on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 18th-ranked Hopkins faced off against Gettysburg College.
The game was even from the start, with neither team establishing a lead of more than five points in the opening 16 minutes. Hopkins managed to pull ahead with a 37-29 lead just before halftime thanks to a jumper from senior forward Will Sykes and a three-pointer from junior guard Brian Johansson. However, Gettysburg responded with consecutive scores, closing the half with a 37-33 score.
The second half continued the intense competition, with both teams trading scores. A 9-0 run by Hopkins at the 12:02-mark gave them a 52-41 lead, but Gettysburg responded with nine unanswered points to bring the game within one. Despite the effort to preserve the lead, Gettysburg mounted a comeback, ultimately securing a 68-60 victory.
The Gettysburg Bullets orchestrated a 17-3 run over the final five minutes, breaking Hopkins' 13-game win streak.
After the loss, men's basketball responded in a big way, securing a decisive victory against Dickinson College in the 22nd annual Wall-O'Mahony Game on Saturday, Feb. 3.
Junior guard John Windley led the charge with 20 points, and the Blue Jays improved their overall record to 16-5 and a conference record of 12-2.
The early minutes of the game were intense, with Dickinson initially leading 9-7. However, a driving layup by graduate student guard Carson James at the 14:49-mark sparked a game-changing 20-4 run for the Blue Jays. This run, fueled by contributions from four players, gave the Blue Jays a 25-11 lead with 7:18 remaining in the first half.
Despite Dickinson's efforts to narrow the gap, the Blue Jays extended their lead with a 12-0 run, bringing the score to 40-18. The first half concluded with Dickinson rallying to reduce the deficit to a 15.
In the second half, Dickinson continued to fight back, scoring the first seven points and pulling within eight. However, the Blue Jays responded with a driving layup from freshman guard Brayden Fagbemi and five consecutive points from junior guard Brian Johansson, rebuilding a 15-point lead.
The game remained close for nearly 10 minutes, with Hopkins leading 67-52. In the final six minutes, the Blue Jays dominated, closing the game on a 12-3 run to secure a 79-55 victory.
John Windley was named the Wall-O'Mahony Game MVP with a game-high 20 points. Brayden Fagbemi and sophomore Charlie Jackson contributed 12 points each, while Jackson led in rebounds with seven.
In an interview with The News-Letter, Windley shared what winning the award meant to him.
“It was definitely nice getting a bounce back win after a tough loss at Gettysburg,“ he said. “As a team we tried to learn from what we did wrong in that game as quickly as possible so we could apply it [on] Saturday and [during] the rest of the season. Dickinson is a very tough team, and they play hard, and they made a little run to start the second half, but we were able to make a little run of our own, open the game back up and hold them off the rest of the way.”
Windley expressed his gratitude for the alumni who came to support the team.
“The Wall-O’Mahony game and weekend is a very special one for this team, and it is always great to have the alumni come back and show their support for the team,” he said. “It is also great to be able to honor two of our alumni in a way that I think is one of the best traditions in Division III.”
The balanced scoring saw graduate student Carson James and freshman Jeb Williams add 10 points each, with James also recording a game-high eight assists.
The remaining schedule is all Centennial Conference games, so this is a huge stretch that will determine playoff seeding. Hopkins will return to action on Feb. 10 at Haverford, with tip-off scheduled for 1:00 p.m.