Kromah Can't Steal Win for GW Men's Hoops in 56-49 Loss to UAB

Junior Lasan Kromah posted a school-record nine steals along with 15 points, five rebounds and five assists in GW's 56-49 loss to UAB on Wednesday night.

Dec. 28, 2011

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GW Coach Lonergan Post-Game vs. UAB (12/28/11)

WASHINGTON - Junior Lasan Kromah's school-record nine steals were outdone by Cameron Moore's school-record 24 rebounds as George Washington men's basketball dropped a 56-49 decision to UAB at Charles E. Smith Center on Wednesday night.

Kromah led GW (4-8) in scoring with 15 points and added five rebounds and five assists along with his nine thefts, which eclipsed the previous school-mark of eight set three different times by recent GW Athletic Hall of Fame selection Shawnta Rogers.

Sophomore Nemanja Mikic chipped in 13 points and a team-high seven rebounds, senior Tony Taylor netted all 10 of his points in the second half, and junior David Pellom tallied nine in his first start of the season. Senior Aaron Ware was the only other Colonial to score with two points.

Moore, the preseason Conference USA Player of the Year, had his fourth double-double of the season by halftime with 11 points and 10 rebounds at the break en route to a dominating 19-point, 24-rebound effort. Jordan Swing pitched in 13 points, including a perfect 8-of-8 performance at the foul line over the final 2:41, and Preston Purifoy made three 3-pointers to finish with 11 points to help UAB (4-7) to its third win in four games.

In a microcosm of its current seven-game losing skid, GW fell behind big in the first half and rallied in the second half only to run out of time and momentum late with the contest within its grasp.

Tied at 6-6 early, the Colonials suffered through a 13:30 drought without a field goal, going 0-for-15 in a stretch during a 17-1 Blazers' run, for their largest deficit of the night at 23-7 with just over three minutes left in the first half. However, GW made four of its final six shots from the floor to close within 26-16 at the break despite shooting just 27 percent compared to 55 percent for UAB in the first half.

The cold trend continued into the second half as the Colonials missed their opening six shots and found themselves down 37-22 with less than 12 minutes to play.

GW fought its way back from there behind Taylor, whose first field goal of the night with 11:20 left and steal-and-dunk with 5:17 to play bookended a 14-6 run that pulled his team within 43-40.

Head coach Mike Lonergan employed a half-court trapping zone defense that helped the Colonials record a season-high 17 steals and forced 23 Blazers' turnovers. However, GW held just a 19-15 edge in points off turnovers due to a 34.5 percent shooting night from the floor, including 1-of-9 from beyond the arc.

The Colonials would get within a possession of the lead on three other occasions, but the Blazers answered at the free throw line every time. Swing made all eight of his charity attempts over the final 2:41 while Purifoy converted a layup after Robert Williams rebounded Moore's missed foul shot with 1:21 to play to put UAB ahead 50-44.

Kromah hit GW's only three of the night to make it 52-47 with 17 seconds left, but Swing clinched UAB's second straight series win with four late free throws.

GW plays its final non-conference home game of the season with a New Years Eve matinee against Delaware State at Charles E. Smith Center this Saturday. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m., and the game can be viewed and listened to live on GW All-Access, as well as and 1500/820 AM.

The GW/DSU game promotion is Kids Day with discounted tickets available that come with free food vouchers for the New Years Eve afternoon contest.