TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology honored its four seniors prior to the final weekend home men's basketball game, and one enjoyed a career-high scoring day as the Fightin' Engineers defeated Mount St. Joseph 85-78 on Saturday at Hulbert Arena.
Eli Combs picked Senior Day for a career-high scoring performance, finishing with 17 points and 10 rebounds on 7-10 from the field. Junior Craig McGee became the 31st player in Rose-Hulman men's basketball history to cross the 1,000-point mark in a career with 12 points to increase his total to 1,003 points.
Seniors John Czarnecki, Michael Lake and David Saadatnezhadi also contributed to their final weekend home game. Czarnecki had six points and five rebounds; Lake had five points and three assists; and Saadantezhadi tallied five points and two assists.
The balanced performance featured 13 players reaching the scoring column for Rose-Hulman. Vuk Djuric tallied nine points and three rebounds; and Jacob Back and Terry Hicks had eight points each to help the offensive attack.
Mount St. Joseph hit 15 three-pointers in the second half alone to turn a 21-point halftime deficit into a seven-point margin at the end. Devin Young had 20 points to lead three Lions in double figures.
Rose-Hulman jumped out early with a 21-6 lead after a layup by Djuric and a three-pointer by McGee. The lead reached 20 points late in the half, after McGee scored on a layup to cross the 1,000-point mark and Hicks buried a three-pointer.
In the second half, Rose-Hulman built the lead as high as 18 points at 73-55 with 5:49 left after a three-point play by Combs. Mount St. Joseph reached single digits in the final seconds, but the Fightin' Engineers held on for the win.
Rose-Hulman improved to 10-9 and 7-5 in HCAC play, while Mount St. Joseph dropped to 4-15 and 2-10 in league games. The Fightin' Engineers travel to Anderson University in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action on Wednesday night.