Cambridge, Mass- The 2018 men's basketball campaign came to a close in the Semi Finals of the NECC Championship Tournament as the No. 1 seeded Southern Vermont College defeated the Lynx 71-51. The Mountaineers held a 6-point lead going into the half, but came out on the attack in the final twenty minutes of play and pushed to comfortable lead early in the second half. With the win, Southern Vermont moves on to the NECC Championship match against No. 2 Becker College. The loss ends the Lynx season, as they finished with their second semi final finish in as many years. Lesley ended their 2018 campaign with a 13-14 overall record, and 7-7 in NECC play.
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE:
- Lesley worked the shot clock early in the game with three of their opening possessions going under the 10-second mark to make the beginning of the night a low-scoring affair. Neither side could maintain an upper hand as Jordan Bellitti rolled in a layup to make it 17-17 with 6:50 left in the half.
- Kyle Depollar followed with converting on an and-1 play for the first three of seven unanswered Southern Vermont points. Depollar and Andre Hodo registered back-to-back buckets to put the Mountaineers on top by eight with 1:52 to go.
- A pair of freebies from Marquise Johnson accounted for the remainder of the period's scoring and the teams went into the break 28-22 in favor of the Mountaineers.
- Southern Vermont opened the second half on a 9-2 run to take a 37-24 lead just two minutes into the half.
- The Lynx struggled to find their groove and only mustered 9-points in the first ten minutes of the second half, while the Mountaineers took control of the game netting 24-points in the ten minute span.
- Back-to-back Bellitti treys made it a 15-point difference under the 10:00 mark, 52-37, but Southern Vermont was able to keep the comfortable lead to secure the 20-point victory.
- Bellitti tallied team highs of 18 points and 9 rebounds in 31 minutes off the Lesley bench as Johnson chalked up 13 points, 4 boards, 3 assists, and 2 steals. Junior Joey Martin got into double digits with 10 points, and grabbed 5 rebounds and 3 assists on the night.
- Pierre led all scorers for the night with 22-points, and also grabbed 6 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2 assists.
- The Mountaineers shot 48.3 percent (28-58) from the floor while Lesley went 19-51 (37.3 percent) from field goal range. The Mountaineers pulled down a 36-29 advantage on the glass while outscoring the Lynx 38-22 from the paint.
Jordan Bellitti- 18 points, 9 rebounds
Marquise Johnson- 13 points, 3 assists, 2 steals
Mike Pierre- 22 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals
Kyle Depollar- 10 points, 4 rebounds
"I am proud of the way we played tonight," said head coach Chris Giordano. "We played tough and we played together for the full 40 minutes, but ultimately we fell short. Southern Vermont was great defensively and got their offense going in the second half. They deserved that win tonight," Giordano concluded on the night. The loss closes the 2018 basketball season for Lesley as they bid farewell to seniors Marquise Johnson and Will Gibson. "This is the toughest group of guys to wear a Lesley jersey that I seen. They overcame every obstacle that we faced, stayed together, and kept working to get better each day," says Giordano. "For the entire season our men displayed what it means to be apart of the Lesley Men's Basketball program and I am extremely proud of the toughness, heart, and togetherness they showed on and off the court. This season has been a great journey and I am grateful for the opportunity to have worked with this group of men every."