Cambridge, Mass- The Lesley Men's basketball team picked up their third straight NECC win Thursday evening against Dean College 83-76. Both teams went back and forth for most of the game, until the Lesley defense earned back to back steals for a 5 point run and a 78-74 lead with 1:52 left on the clock. The defensive spark plug was enough to charge the Lynx and hold on to the victory. Lesley improves to 9-6 overall and 4-1 in conference, while Dean sits at an even 7-7 overall and 2-3 in NECC play.
INSIDE THE BOXSCORE:
- Two Randolf Thurman free throws gave Dean a 68-60 lead with six and a half minutes remaining in the game, but the Lynx fought back and outscored the Bulldogs 23-8 down the stretch to earn the victory.
- The contest was neck and neck throughout, with eight ties and nine lead changes to make for an exciting night of NECC competition.
- Dean led 34-33 at halftime after Armani Baker finished a layup as the first half clock expired.
- Joey Martin led the Lesley squad sinking four 3-pointers, and had a total of 18 points in the first half. Martin's 18 points was more than half of the team's 33 points at the end of the first twenty minutes.
- Martin continued his shooting brigade to open the half nailing another 3-pointer to take a six point lead for the Lynx.
- The Bulldogs responded with a 6-0 run to erase the deficit and tie the score at 51 with 13 minutes remaining in the game. Another six point spurt by the Bulldogs gave Dean the 68-60 lead that they were unable to hold on to.
- Back to back layups by Marquise Johnson closed the 8-point deficit. Johnson followed up with a steal and dishing an assist to Jordan Bellitti to make it 71-66 and force a Bulldog timeout.
- The Johnson and Bellitti combo struck again when Johnson stole the ball and fed it to Bellitti who took it home with a slam dunk. Bellitti than had a steal and layup of his own to make it 70-72 in favor of the Bulldogs.
- Johnson and Bellitti each had another steal before setting up a Martin 3-pointer to take the final lead of the night 78-74 in the final minute of play.
- Bellitti had a strong second half netting 15 of his total 17 points.
- Martin led all scorers in the match with 33 points and recorded his fourth double-double on the season with 12 rebounds.
Joey Martin- 33 points, 12 rebounds
Jordan Bellitti- 17 points, 4 steals, 4 assists
Marquise Johnson- 15 points, 5 steals, 7 rebounds
Dayvon Russell- 22 points, 8 rebounds
Josh Croskey- 11 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals
Randolf Thurman- 11 points, 5 rebounds
"I'm proud of our effort on the road tonight," said head coach Chris Giordano. "Dean is a really athletic and explosive team, and they know how to score multiple ways. We responded well to the runs they went on and kept the game within striking distance," he concluded.
"Every game on the road is tough and we're happy to get the win on road," Marquise Johnson stated. "Our program is built on battling adversity and winning against the odds and tonight that's what we did."
Lesley next hosts Mitchell College on Saturday for another NECC match up.