When and Where: February 6, 2019 – Colchester, Vt. (Ross Sports Center)
Score: Saint Michael's College 82, Southern New Hampshire University 72
Records: SMC 6-14 (3-12 NE10), SNHU 10-10 (6-9 NE10)
Junior Eamonn Joyce (Medford, Mass.) dropped in 20 points, but the Southern New Hampshire University men's basketball team had its second-half lead evaporate down the stretch, as Saint Michael's College earned an 82-72 win Wednesday night at the Ross Sports Center.
- Joyce was an efficient 8-for-13 from the field, including 1-for-4 from long range, and 3-for-4 at the line, while collecting eight rebounds and blocking a pair of shots.
- Fellow junior Shawn Montague (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) registered his second straight double-double with 14 points (7-9 FG) and 10 boards.
- Senior Daquaise Andrews (Queens, N.Y.) also netted 14 points (4-11 FG, 4-7 3-FG, 2-2 FT) to go with four rebounds and two helpers.
- Freshman Mikey Buscetto (Waterford, Conn.) dished a career-high 12 assists in 28 minutes off the bench, while scoring three points (1-3 FG, 1-3 3-FG) and grabbing a pair of rebounds.
- Derek Cheatom led all scorers with 35 points (12-19 FG, 6-9 3-FG, 5-5 FT) for the Purple Knights.
- HOW IT HAPPENED
- After Andrews opened the scoring by knocking down a 3-pointer, Saint Michael's ripped off 10-in-a-row – with six from Jordan Guzman and four from Cheatom – to seize a 10-3 lead three minutes into the contest. A 9-2 counter-run for Southern New Hampshire – capped by another Andrews trey – left the score tied, 12-12, with 11:50 remaining in the first half.
- Three ties and three lead changes ensued over the next 10 minutes, with SNHU holding on to a 32-31 lead when Andrews buried his third triple of the opening half with under a minute left to send the Penmen to the break with a 35-31 advantage.
- A three-point play from Joyce to begin the second half gave Southern New Hampshire its largest lead of the night at 38-31 just 38 seconds in. The margin was six nearly two minutes later when nine straight from Cheatom carried a 14-2 blitz that he ended with a 3 to put the Purple Knights on top, 50-44, with 13:54 to go in the game.
- Joyce answered with a 3-pointer of his own to spark a 13-5 run that gave the Penmen the lead at 57-55 with 9:08 on the clock, but an 18-4 rush – with six from Winston Jones II, and two each from Cheatom and Guzman – broke open a 73-61 advantage for the Purple Knights with 3:17 remaining.
- Five straight from Joyce powered a 7-0 spurt that trimmed the SNHU deficit to just five at 73-68 with 1:41 to play, but that was as close as the visitors would get, as Saint Michael's ended the game on a 9-4 run.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
- Southern New Hampshire outshot Saint Michael's, 48.3 percent (29-60) to 43.9 percent (29-66), while the Purple Knights returned the favor from long distance, 47.6 percent (14-19) to 30.4 percent (7-11).
- Saint Michael's was also plus-7 at the line and shot it better, 73.7 percent (14-19) to 63.6 percent (7-11).
- The Penmen captured the paint (42-30) and received more bench scoring (15-5), while the Purple Knights narrowly won the glass (36-34), collected more points off mistakes (18-9) and featured a more impressive assist-to-turnover ratio (20/7-20/14).
- Senior Remo Simankevicius (Melbourne, Australia) posted eight points (4-8 FG), two rebounds and a pair of blocks in 15 minutes off the bench.
- Classmate Charlie Russo (Syracuse, N.Y.) recorded seven points (3-8 FG, 1-5 3-FG) and four helpers.
- Freshman Justyn Lacy (Catskill, N.Y.) chimed in with four points (2-4 FG) and four rebounds.
- Southern New Hampshire has now lost four straight after winning five of six, while Saint Michael's snapped a six-game losing skid.
- SNHU had captured three-in-a-row against the Purple Knights, with the last Saint Michael's victory coming in an 84-81 home win Feb. 4, 2017.
- Buscetto's 12 assists are the most for a Penmen in a single game since Sotirios Karapostolu handed out 12 at home against Dowling College on Dec. 17, 2000 - the same year Buscetto was born.
- It is the seventh time this season Joyce has scored 20 or more points, as well as the ninth time in his career.
- Joyce, who has reached the 20-point plateau six times in his last nine games, is averaging 19.2 points per contest during that span.
- Montague's double-double is his eighth of the season.
- The Penmen return to action Saturday, Feb. 9 (3:30 p.m.) when they play host to Stonehill College at the Stan Spirou Field House on Pink Day.
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