BOSTON, Mass. – Led by Alex Sanchez's (Salem, Mass.) career-high 24 points, 18 of which came in the second half men's basketball rallied in the second half to pick-up an 80-73 win over longtime rival Bridgewater State University Thursday evening in the Clark Athletic Center Gymnasium.
UMass Boston 80, Bridgewater State University 73
UMass Boston (8-4)
Bridgewater State U. (7-6)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Sanchez's huge night was the result of an 8-for-10 showing from the field, 3-for-3 from 3-point range, and 5-for-5 at the charity stripe. The Beacons who trailed for nearly the entire contest, got the push they needed late in the second half to take control of Thursday's non-conference match-up. Event at 62-62, the Beacons first saw big-man Sam Freeman (Boston, Mass.) drop in a lay-up to make it 64-62. Moments later, the momentum of the contest completely shifted in favor of the Beacons when Sanchez drained a deep 3-pointer with 4:44 to play.
The Bears tried to close the gap, but the Beacons tight man-to-man defense limited the Bears long range shooting, which had carried them through the first half. Keyon Armstrong cut the deficit to four with 2:51 to play after he went 2-for-2 at the line.
However, a 3-pointer by Dan Powers (Westwood, Mass.) with 2:28 to play completely neutralized any late heroics by Bridgewater State. Sanchez all but sealed the win for UMass with his final field goal of the contest with just over 1:30 to play.
Fawaz Mass, who led Bridgewater State with 21 points, completed a 4-point play with 1:09 to go, but Sanchez' 2-for-2 showing at the line kept the Beacons lead at three possession game as the time continued to wind down.
Powers was also crucial in the win as he posted one of his best double-doubles in a Beacons uniform. The Westwood native combined for 19 points on 7-of-15 shooting, which included a pair of 3-pointers and three free throws. On the glass the forward collected 16 boards, 14 of which came on the defensive glass. Powers was just as effective as Sanchez in the second half, as the senior carried UMass with 12 points and an impressive 13 rebounds.
Freeman's night consisted of 17 points, six boards, and two blocks in a team-leading 35 minutes of playing time.
For the Bears Keyon Armstrong and Rocky DeAndrade finished with 15 and 16 points respectively, while Michael Soares collected a team-high six rebounds.
BY THE NUMBERS
- All-time UMass Boston leads the series 18-16 with Bridgewater State
- On the night, UMass Boston shot 53.6% from the field, and 46.7% from behind the arc; Bridgewater State shot 43.1% from the floor and 50.0% from 3-point range
- At the line UMass Boston shot an impressive 92.9% (13-14)
- UMass Boston combined for 37 rebounds, while Bridgewater had 23 boards
- The Beacons bench accounted for 35 of the team's 80 points, with 42 of those coming in the paint
UMass Boston will host Rhode Island College on Saturday at 3 p.m. in a Little East Conference contest.