CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Lesley University saw three players finish in double-figures as the Lynx topped Wheelock College 72-62 in New England Collegiate Conference Men's Basketball play tonight at the Nicholas Athletics Center.
The Lynx, who led for all but 50-seconds of the contest, snap a two game losing skid with the win as they improve to 5-16 on the season and 4-6 in the NECC while the Wildcats fall to 5-13 overall and 3-7 in conference games.
Junior Devon Mayo (Newport News, Va.) posted his first career double-double with game-highs of 18 points and ten rebounds to go along with a team-high six assists. Senior Corbin Polec (Okemos, Mich.) finished with 15 points and seven boards and junior Pierre St. Simon (Farmingdale, N.Y.) poured in 13 points while corralling nine caroms. Senior Casey Blanchard (Bernardston, Mass.) came off the bench and knocked down all three of his three-point attempts to add nine points and junior Terrell Toney (Lakewood, Wash.) added seven points, six rebounds, and a pair of assists.
Wheelock junior Anthony Williams (White Plains, N.Y.) paced the guests with 14 points and five boards while classmate Matthew Eason (East Hartford, Conn.) went 4-of-5 from the field, including 3-of-4 on his tries from deep, to finish with 11 points off the bench. Fellow junior Devin Brown (Chicago, Ill.) added seven points and eight rebounds and senior Joe Reedy (Orlando, Fla.) added six points, a team-high nine boards, four assists, one block, and one steal.
The Lynx shot 37% (25-of-67) from the floor compared to a 40% (24-of-60) shooting night for the Wildcats, but the hosts pounded the glass and outrebounded their counterparts by a 52-38 margin. The 52 rebounds for the team marks a season-high and falls two short of the program record of 54 set on January 12, 2006 vs. St. Joseph's (VT). Lesley also turned 18 offensive boards into 18 second chance points and outscored Wheelock by a 30-22 margin in the paint.
The Lynx sprinted out of the gate as a Mayo triple capped a 15-5 run to open the game. After a Wildcats timeout at the 14:35 mark of the first half, the guests would chip away at the Lynx lead and answered with an 11-5 spurt of their own to pull within five, 21-16. Lesley would counter with a timeout of their own, which proved to be beneficial as they came out and used a balanced attack that saw five different players combine to score 13 unanswered points to build their biggest lead of the night, 34-16.
A pair of St. Simon free throws put the Lynx up 39-23 with 1:32 to go before the break before a quick 6-0 streak for the Wildcats brought them back to within eleven, but Blanchard would knock down a triple from the corner with just three seconds on the clock to send Lesley into halftime leading 42-28.
Midway through the second half of play, a Mayo three-ball gave the Lynx a 57-42 advantage, but the Wildcats continued to fight and used a two trey's of their own to anchor a 10-0 run over the next 2:32 to pull back within five points, 57-52.
A St. Simon jumper would break up the run but another Wheelock triple by Devin Brown would dwindle the Lesley advantage to just four points, 59-55. A layup by Lesley's Chris Barletta (Valrico, Fla.) coupled with a pair of Toney free throws would push the Lynx lead back to eight, 63-55, with just under three minutes left.
Wheelock would make one final run as Eason and Reedy both connected from beyond the arc to cut the lead to five, but Lesley would hit all six of their free throw attempts in the final two minutes to seal the victory.
Lesley will kick off a brief two-game road trip on Saturday when they head to Becker College for a 1:00p start while Wheelock will return to action on Thursday at Daniel Webster College at 7:30p.