CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Lesley University men's basketball team fell to Southern Vermont College, 78-67, Saturday evening, to split the season series. Junior guard Devon Mayo (Newport News, Va.) shot an astounding 55% from the field as he drained a season-high 31 points on the Mountaineers in the loss.
The Lynx fall to 13-7 on the season and 7-4 in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) play while Southern Vermont climbs back to .500 improving to 9-9 including 7-2 against league foes.
Lesley answered an early bucket by Mountaineer junior forward Claude Payne (South Plainfield, N.J.) with an 8-0 run to take an 8-2 lead two minutes into the contest. Junior guard Marquise Johnson (Hampton, Va.) connected with sophomore forward Joey Martin (Melbourne, Fla.) at the perimeter for a three-point jumper to extend the Lynx lead to seven, 11-4. It was their largest lead of the half but the Mountaineers were not going to go away quietly.
Over the next 10 minutes, the Mountaineers pulled to within two points of the Lynx three times before closing the gap to one, 18-17, with 7:12 remaining in the half. Senior guard Nate Goldsmith (Capitol Heights, Md.) found junior guard Mike Pierre (Melrose, N.Y.) in the paint for the easy lay-up to pull the game to within one point for the Mountaineers. But the Lynx had an answer.
First year guard Treyvon Trent (Virginia Beach, Va.) ignited a 7-1 Lynx run, with 6:24 left, draining a long-range trey to put Lesley back on top by seven. However, momentum began to swing over towards the Mountaineer bench.
After sophomore forward Charlie Reznikoff (Wilton, Conn.) picked up his fourth foul with 4:30 remaining in the half, the Mountaineers began to pounce. Goldsmith knocked down one-of-two from the charity stripe to spark a 7-0 run culminating in a Pierre jumper to give the Mountaineers their first lead, 26-25, since the opening eight seconds.
The final three minutes of the first half was a barn-burner with the two teams exchanging the lead twice. Mayo netted back-to-back lay-ups to give the Lynx the three-point advantage but it was short-lived. Southern Vermont sophomore guard Josh Borders (Miami, Fla.) sparked an 8-0 run to end the half and send the Mountaineers into the locker room with the 34-29 advantage.
When the teams emerged from the locker room at the beginning of the second half, the Mountaineer offense remained red-hot, extending their lead to double figures, 41-31, in the opening minutes. But the Lynx were resilient and continued to chip away at the deficit.
Trailing by nine points, 46-37, 4:36 into the period, the Lynx utilized a 9-0 run to tie up the contest at 46-46. Mountaineer sophomore guard Kyle Depollar (Rockville, Md.) was clutch, coming right off the bench to drain a trey to put Southern Vermont back up by three, 49-46. However, moments later Mayo tied the game at 49-49 with a three-point jumper of his own.
Momentum stayed with the Mountaineers as they went on a 15-4 run over the next six minutes to take an 11-point, 64-53, lead with 5:15 minutes remaining on the clock. Although the Lynx made it a two-possession game, 66-60, with 4:08 left, it still was not enough to overpower a 44-point second half from the Mountaineers.
Goldsmith led four Mountaineers in double figures netting 17 points while coming two rebounds shy of a double-double recording eight. Senior guard Rayshawn Taylor (Silver Spring, Md.) followed up with 13 points while Pierre was next in line with 12 points. Depollar rounded out the Southern Vermont scorers in double figures with 11 points off the bench.
Johnson followed up Mayo's 31-point night registering a double-double, tallying 14 points while pulling down a game-high 10 rebounds.
The Lynx return to the hard-court Tuesday January 31st when they travel into the city to tip-off against NECC foe Wheelock College at 8:30 p.m. The Mountaineers will also be back in action Tuesday evening when they host Newbury College at 7:00 p.m.