The Corsairs turn up the heat

By Kristen Botas, Contributing Writer

The Corsairs took the road this week to over to Brandeis University this Tuesday, November 29, Bridgewater State University on December 1 and finally took it home against Keene State on December 3.  It was an week full of turnovers and a consistent keep of pressure from the Corsairs.

The men took a close loss against Brandeis, with a final score of 65-60.

After guard, Jon Robinson won the opening shot of the contest, Brandeis sped-off with a 15-2 run in the next six minutes to give the Judges an early 11-point lead.

The Judges continued until the start the second half with a 18-point lead.

This lead sparked a flame in the men causing a strong drive against the Judges.

The strong second-half by the Corsairs fell just short, as free throws showed to cause the slight difference in the game. Robinson bombarded the basket by scoring seven-straight points to bring the shortcoming back down.

The Judges maintained their cool until Josh Nelson scored on a jumper with 5:14 remaining, causing strive for increased pressure in Umass Dartmouth.

A much-needed five points by Nick Portelance tightened the gap with less than two minutes to go. The hosts banked all four foul shots ultimately causing the close loss for the Corsairs.

In the game against Bridgewater State, the men made a turn-around and brought home a win with a final score of 77-71.

The Corsairs maintained a one-point advantage midway through the first half, until the Bears set forth a 20-7 run over to create a comfortable lead into the break. Bridgewater expanded their 11-point lead to 13-points into early in the second half.

Chris Mendes sunk a 3-pointer to steal the advantage back. Robinson scored the next four points, and Tucker Bouchard banded together from past the arc to give the Corsairs their highest lead of the game.

The Corsairs turned up the heat with a roaring 18-3 run with eight points by Abi Akanni to overhaul the lead permanently.

The boys scored all eight of their final free throws in the last eight minutes, while the Bears could rally up 5-of-11 from the foul line in the same amount of time.

Some highlights include, our very own head coach Brian Baptiste with his achievement of his 600th career victory with the men’s win over Bridgewater State. With this win, Baptiste becomes just the sixth active Division III men’s basketball coach to reach the career milestone.

In the game against Keene Sate, the Corsairs continued to keep the heat, with a win and a final score of 83-71.

Keene State was taken over by turnovers from the beginning, and the boys took full advantage, leading for the whole beginning 20 minutes.

Two back to back 3-pointers by Robinson created a nine-point advantage for the men for the largest lead of the half, maintaining a five-point edge until the half.

Robinson was 4-of-6 from the field and a perfect 3-for-3 from 3-point range on the opening frame, with his squad generating 14 points on 14 Owl turnovers.

The Owls sparked a slight flame running with an 11-3 run by baskets creating their first lead of the game, but fell short when the Corsairs took back the lead. Six-straight points by Portelance broke the tied score, striking a 17-3 Corsair run that overall finished the game.

Keene State tightened the gap to eight points difference, but five-straight points by Corsair Joshua Imadiyi regained the advantage back up.

The team defeated the nationally-ranked Keene State team for the first time since 2007, gracefully handing the No. 13-ranked Owls their first loss of the season. The two teams debuted in Little East Conference at the Tripp Center.

If you enjoy the game, come try to come out to support the men through the remainder of their season during the winter break up to the start of the spring semester.


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