MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee Panthers (4-2) fell to the DePaul Blue Demons (3-1) 80 to 71 on Tuesday night in their home opener. Cleveland Melvin led the way for the Blue Demons with 20 points and 9 rebounds while Matt Tiby also had 20 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Panthers.
DePaul shot over 60 percent in the second half to open the game wide open after the game was knotted at 32 at half. Milwaukee got to as close to 8 points under 3 minutes left but couldn’t get any closer than that.
Rob Jeter was visibly emotional after the game.
“We asked these young men to do something that I thought was going to be very difficult for a team that is as inexperienced as we are, to play as many games as we did in a short turnaround,” Jeter said.
Jeter expressed his feelings about how fatigue effected his team near the end of the game.
“When fatigue sets in its important that we don’t break down and stay disciplined. Now that’s not an excuse, because when you are disciplined, no matter how tired you are, you’re going to do the right things. And clearly that’s where we’re trying to get with this group,” Jeter said “We need to make a conscious effort to be more disciplined.”
The Panthers only had nine turnovers, but big shots by Cleveland Melvin and Brandon Young really kept the Panthers out of it.
“Melvin made some big times plays,” Jeter said. “You have to give those guys some credit”
Milwaukee held its own against a Big East opponent with some talented scorers. Although it was a winnable game, the Panthers will have to forget about this one quickly if they want to keep going in the right direction, something Rob Jeter thinks they can.
The Panthers will look to bounce back when they play Tennessee Tech this Saturday.