MEDFORD, Mass. – The No. 8 Tufts University men's basketball team built a sizable first half lead and used that advantage to pick up an 88-58 win over visiting Lesley University on Wednesday evening at Cousens Gym. The loss drops the Lynx to 7-4 on the season while the win bumps the Jumbos to 9-2 overall.
The Jumbos would score the first six points of the game before the Lynx were able to get on the board with a free throw from senior Pierre St. Simon (Farmingdale, N.Y.). A triple from Tufts junior Vincent Pace extended the hosts' lead to 9-1 before Simon added two free throws a little over a minute later, but he would be the only Lynx to score for the first seven minutes of the game. Freshman Lamarr Mitchell (Baltimore, Md.) made a free throw with 13:04 left in the half to move the score to 12-4.
Just under nine minutes into the first half, Lynx junior Marquise Johnson (Hampton, Va.) made a jumper before classmate Will Gibson (Melbourne, Fla.) added a layup to bring the Lynx within six, 14-8. Jumbo junior Stefan Duvivier added a lay-up to bring the advantage back to eight in the Jumbos favor. Lesley sophomore Xeo Golding (Windermere, Fla.) turned in back-to-back treys to bring the visitors within two, 16-14, but that would be as close as they would get. Senior tri-captain Tarik Smith answered with a three of his own to move the Jumbos lead back to five, 19-14.
Ahead 19-16 the Jumbos received a three-point play from senior tri-captain Tom Palleschi with a layup and a free throw, and sophomore Ethan Feldman added a three, followed by a made free throw from junior Ben Engvall to give the Jumbos the ten point advantage, 26-16. Tufts would extend their lead to 37-24 at the half.
It was the Jumbos that came out of the half on a roll. After a pair of made free throws from senior Devon Mayo (Newport News, Va.) made two three throws early in the second half, the Jumbos scored 14 unanswered points over five minutes to take a 55-27 lead. They would hold on to that lead for the duration of the second half, picking up the 88-58 win.
The Jumbos were led by 16 points from Smith, and he added four rebounds and three assists to his evening. Freshman Eric Savage scored 15 points and added eight boards off the bench. Engvall helped with 12 points and five rebounds and KJ Garrett scored six points and added six rebounds. Freshman Patrick Racy finished with seven rebounds and a steal for the Jumbos.
St. Simon, Johnson, and Mayo all finished with ten points apiece for the Lynx while Golding added nine points. Gibson helped with five points and seven rebounds off the bench while Mitchell also added five points in reserve duty.
The Lynx shot just 14.7 percent from the field in the first half and finished the game at 26.5 percent, compared to the Jumbos 44.9 percent. The Jumbos were able to capitalize off 19 Lynx turnovers, scoring 15 points off those turnovers. Twelve different Jumbos scored in the contest, as they got 42 points off the bench.
Lesley will be back in action on Saturday when they host New England College with a 7:30p start. The Jumbos will next travel to Bowdoin on Friday evening for a 7:00p start.
Release courtesy of Tufts Sports Information