Saturday, February 18, 2012

Stony Brook Men's hoops comes back to beat Northeastern, 76-69

Final Stats
Boston - Sophomore Dave Coley (Brooklyn, N.Y.) scored a game-high 21 points, and the Stony Brook men's basketball team overcame a nine-point, second-half deficit to knock off the Northeastern Huskies 76-69 Saturday afternoon at Matthews Arena.

The win is Stony Brook's 15th win over its last 17 games and helps improve the team overall record to 18-8. It is also Stony Brook sixth road win in its last eight tries.

Coley's 21 points matched a career high, originally set at Boston University earlier this season. Senior Dallis Joyner (Norfolk, Va.) had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Junior Tommy Brenton (Columbia, Md.) added 13 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, two blocks and two steals in a very well-rounded effort.

Stony Brook outrebounded Northeastern 38-26, including 16 offensive boards that led to 26 second chance points. The Seawolves shot 47.5 percent for the game.

Northeastern was led by Joel Smith's 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting and 6-of-10 from the three-point line. NU shot 51 percent for the game and was 10-for-17 from behind the arc.

"I thought we played really well today, had good energy and made big plays," head coach Steve Pikiell said. "At the end, we made some defensive stops, grabbed offensive rebounds and made the most of our opportunities against a very good team. Now we look forward to getting back to league play Tuesday at Hartford."

After a 16-6 Northeastern run mid-way through the second half, the Seawolves were trailing 55-46 with 8:02 remaining in the game. The Seawolves got it down to six after a junior Leonard Hayes (Voorhees, N.J.) three-pointer. NU responded by getting its lead back to nine on a three-point play by Quincy Ford, making it 62-53 with 5:53 to go.

From there, it was all Seawolves as they began their comeback. Brenton was a big part of it with a put-back dunk at 4:46 to make it a five-point game, 62-57. NU's Jonathan Lee responded with a layup, but Brenton came back with a nifty dish to senior Al Rapier (Chicago, Ill.) for a layup at 4:02, making it 64-59.

Brenton then dished to Coley, who drilled a three-pointer to cut the deficit to two, 64-62. Brenton then stripped NU's Kauri Black of the ball and went in for an uncontested fastbreak dunk to tie the game at 64-64 and force a Huskies timeout.

Brenton forced another turnover when he got his hand in the way of a pass in the post. Coley ended up with the ball and went in for a layup, but was fouled by Lee, and the foul was ruled flagrant. Coley made one of two from the line, and with the ball back, Brenton drew a blocking foul and went to the line.

Brenton made the first, and the second missed, but Joyner was there for the offensive rebound. Joyner then found Rapier for an easy layup and the foul. He missed the free throw, but the ball went out of bounds, last touched by the Huskies. Joyner made a layup at 1:39 to put the Seawolves on top 70-64.

Northeastern got it to within three on another Smith three-pointer with 40 seconds to go, but Coley made four free throws from there on out, and the Huskies missed their final three shots.

The second half flurry had come after a competitive first half that saw the Huskies make seven of their first eight three-point attempts to build a seven-point lead, 35-28.

But the Seawolves made a furious comeback late in the half. Coley hit a layup and drew a foul with 32 seconds left to cut NU's lead to five. He missed the free throw, but an offensive rebound by Brenton put the ball back into SBU's hands. Holding for final shot, Hayes knocked down a three-pointer with nine seconds left to make it a two-point game. Then Coley stole the in-bound pass and immediately put up an off-balance jumper from just inside the three-point line that banked in and tied the game at 35-35 going into the break.

Stony Brook finished the game with 16 assists to just 10 turnovers and scored 19 points off of 11 NU turnovers. SBU was 13-for-19 from the free throw line, and NU was 7-for-12.

Stony Brook returns to America East play Tuesday at Hartford at 7 p.m. The Seawolves are two wins away from clinching their second America East regular season championship in three seasons.