GORHAM, Maine – A 17-7 run would prove to be the difference maker as men's basketball surrendered their nine point lead midway through the second half to fall to the Huskies of the University of Southern Maine by the final of 64-58 Tuesday evening in Hill Gymnasium in a Little East Conference contest.
UMass Boston (8-7, 2-4 Little East) started off the second half of Tuesday's contest with a three point lead, which they quickly pushed to nine following a 6-0 run to start the final frame. Unfortunately that early momentum did not last, as the Huskies (10-6, 5-1 Little East) clawed their way back to regain control of the scoreboard with 9:38 left on a Connor Sullivan lay-up.
That basket from Sullivan would put the Huskies out in front 46-44, and they would never look back after that. USM used consistent shooting to distance themselves from the Beacons and eventually pushed their lead to as much as nine points (62-53).
Sullivan's second half push for the Huskies capped off a game-high 16 points for the junior guard. From the field, Sullivan was 8-for-14, and also collected a team-best six rebounds.
For the Beacons, junior center Rahshjeem Benson (Boston, Mass.) finished Tuesday's loss with 14 points and 15 rebounds to earn his sixth double-double of the year. Vinny DeLucia (Miami, Fla.) fresh off his solid performance in Saturday's near victory over Eastern Connecticut State University closed out the night with 12 points on 4-of-14 shooting from the floor, which included a pair of 3-pointers.
Off the bench, big-man Brian Clarke (Miramar, Fla.) finished with 11 rebounds and also dropped in eight points. Carl Joseph (Brockton, Mass.) also finished Tuesday's contest with eight points to go along with seven boards. As a team UMB shot 37.7% from the floor and a season-best 90% at the line. Southern Maine shot 41.2% on the night as they 28-for-68. The Beacons dominated the glass as they out-rebounded their conference rival 50-29.
Proving to be the ultimate downfall for the Beacons was their inability to possess the ball, as they were charged with 27 turnovers on the night, 12 of which came in the second half. The Huskies were charged with a mere 11 turnovers in the win, with only four of those coming in the final 20 minutes of play.
Men's Basketball returns to action on Saturday when they host Western Connecticut State University at 3 p.m.