SECOND-HALF SURGE PROPELS #14 FRANKLIN PIERCE PAST MEN’S BASKETBALL, 91-71
Rindge, N.H. – The 14th-ranked Franklin Pierce University men's basketball team made 14 three-pointers in the second half on its way to a come-from-behind 91-71 win over Le Moyne College on Saturday afternoon in Northeast-10 Conference action at The FPU Fieldhouse.
Sophomore guard Naté Gause (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Poughkeepsie/Quinnipiac) registered a career-high 24 points in 23 minutes off the bench as one of four Dolphins to tally double digit points. Junior forward Brian Zapisek (Manlius, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius) scored 13 points, senior guard Gamal Mohamed (North Plainfield, N.J./Immaculata) posted 11 points and junior center Jim Janson (Scotia, N.Y./Scotia-Glenville) registered 10 points. Mohamed pulled down a game-best eight rebounds, while junior guard Chris Secky (Bemus Point, N.Y./Maple Grove) dished out a career-high eight assists.
Eric Jean-Guillaume went 6-for-6 from three-point range in the second half as he tallied 22 of his game-high 29 points, while adding four assists and four steals. Ryen Vilmont made four of his six three-point attempts in the second half to finish the game with 17 points. Vilmont added seven rebounds, three assists, two blocks and a pair of steals. Curtis Christian came off the bench to score 11 points, while Ellis Cooper posted 10 points and seven rebounds.
The Dolphins jumped out to an 8-3 lead over the opening 3:49 of the game. Zapisek made a pair of lay-ups, Janson scored in the paint and then Gause made a fast-break jumper.
After the Raven scored seven straight points to take the lead with 14:43 remaining, the teams went back-and-forth over the next five minutes, resulting in a tie at 19 apiece. Janson (6) and Gause (5) accounted for all 11 of Le Moyne's points in the span, while four players combined for Franklin Pierce's nine points.
Zapisek then made a lay-up and a three-pointer to give the Dolphins the lead, which they would not relinquish over the final 9:08.
Following a Cooper lay-up with 3:36 left that pulled the Ravens within 28-27, the Dolphins scored eight straight points to take their largest lead of the game. Mohamed nailed a pair of three-pointers around a Gause lay-up in the 69-second spurt. Gause then connected on a pair of technical free throws with 1.4 seconds left to give the Dolphins a 40-32 lead at halftime.
After Franklin Pierce scored 10 of the first 17 points of the second half to pull within 47-42 with 17:22 left, the Ravens scored 24 straight points and 29 of the next 33 points over the next seven minutes. The Ravens made a field goal, six of which were three-pointers, on each of their first nine possessions of the half. After having a scoreless possession, the Ravens made a field goal on each of their next six possessions, including three three-pointers. Jean-Guillaume hit a three-pointer in the 10-7 stretch and then added 14 points on four three-pointers and a jumper in the 29-4 streak, while Vilmont scored five points on a three-pointer and a jumper in the 10-7 span and nine points on three three-pointers in the 29-4 jaunt.
Following a jumper by freshman guard Qwadere Lovell (Mount Vernon, N.Y./Mount Vernon) with 8:53 left to pull the Dolphins within 73-56, Christian buried consecutive three-pointers to give the Ravens their largest lead of the game with 7:29 remaining.
The Dolphins scored 15 of the game's next 22 points to trim their deficit to 15 with 3:53 remaining, but could not get any closer. Gause recorded nine of the points on a pair of three-pointers and a traditional three-point play, while Zapisek, sophomore forward Ryan Romich (Groton, Mass./Groton-Dunstable/Vermont Academy) and freshman forward Connor Mahoney (Hanover, Mass./BC High/Brooks School) each added two points.
Andre Blackwood made a jumper and Scotty Tavares-Taylor nailed a three-pointer to close out the game's scoring.
Le Moyne (7-6, 4-5 NE-10) returns to the hardwood on Tuesday at Merrimack College at 7:30 p.m.