Tonawanda News —
AMHERST — With point guard Mark Coppola still recovering from an injured shoulder suffered in the Daemen men's basketball team's season opener on Nov. 8, senior guard Casey Sheehan had to shoulder the brunt of the load Saturday when his Wildcats went up against Mercyhurst University.
The always-entertaining Sheehan was up for the challenge, as he scored a game-high 19 points on 67 percent shooting from the field to lead Daemen to a 69-63 win, the 25th consecutive home victory for the Wildcats and first-ever victory over Mercyhurst.
Sheehan hasn't played point guard since his high school days and it showed, as he committed eight turnovers — two late in regulation. But the senior said he knew he had to step up and make plays when his team needed it.
"I haven't played point since freshman year so I'm still a little shaky," Sheehan said. "(Supreme Hannah) comes in and does a great job, and we both just do what we can whenever we have to. We both can get it done and I like how 'Sup' is coming up too — he's going to be a great point guard."
Sheehan is referring to sophomore Supreme Hannah, who has stepped into a starting role since Coppola went down. He was held scoreless on Saturday in only 20 minutes of action, but Daemen head coach Don Silveri has been impressed with the young point guard and wondered after the game if he should have played him more down the stretch.
The Wildcats led for almost the entirety of the game. The Lakers made a run at the end of the game but every time they got close, Daemen answered.
With 3:45 left in regulation Mercyhurst got within six points and seemed to be grabbing momentum. On the next Daemen possession the offense broke down a bit and it looked like the Wildcats were going to have to settle for a bad shot. But Sheehan had the answer when he pulled up from beyond NBA 3-point range and drilled the shot to put Daemen back up nine with 3:30 left.