(Release Courtesy of Wheelock Sports Information)
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - The Wheelock College men's basketball team shot 15-for-18 on free-throw tries in overtime, and the Wildcats pulled away from Wentworth Institute of Technology for an 87-80 victory in the season opener for both squads on Monday at Pine Manor College's Brunelli Court.
In the second meeting between the schools, the fourth-year Wheelock team set a school record for free throws, going 40-for-49 at the charity stripe. Junior Kyle Pierce (Burlington, MA/Burlington) was 13-for-15 on freebie tries, including 9-of-10 in overtime, en route to scoring 23 points, while classmate Eric Rice (Woburn, MA/Woburn) also tallied 23 points, a career high, to go along with four steals. Senior Daniel Main (Hopedale, MA/Hopedale) recorded a double-double behind 12 points and 11 rebounds, as he shot 12-of-14 on free-throw attempts to account for all of his points. Juniors Max Kaim (Fort Lauderdale, FL/Cypress Bay) and Victor Kashouh (Providence, RI/Classical) added nine points apiece.
Wentworth sophomore Corey Therriault (Auburn, ME/Edward Little) doubled his previous career high, dropping 32 points behind a 9-for-14 effort from three-point range, coming within one three of matching a school record. Senior Sam Herrick (Duxbury, MA/Duxbury) also turned in a career-high point total during a double-double performance of 21 points and 14 boards. The Leopards shot 11-of-25 from deep.
Herrick's free throw 32 seconds into overtime gave Wentworth its only lead of the game, 71-70, and helped his team completely erase a 16-point advantage by the hosts. However, Rice responded with a jumper 15 seconds later to give Wheelock the lead for good. Therriault's three at 3:04 brought his team within 75-74, and a Herrick freebie with 43 ticks left made it 78-76, but the Wildcats shot 9-for-10 at the charity stripe during the final 37.5 seconds to pull away.
Wheelock built upon a 37-27 halftime advantage by twice grabbing a 16-point lead during the opening 5:31 of the second half, including when a pair of Rice free throws made the score 51-35. Main drained two more freebies at 11:37 to provide a 58-43 advantage, but three threes from Therriault triggered a 13-0 Leopard run during a 3:13 stretch that made it a two-point game.
An ensuing 10-0 run during a span of 1:54 provided Wheelock with a 68-56 lead, and Main canned two free throws at 3:41 to keep the margin at 12. However, Therriault scored 10 of his team's points during a 12-0 run over the final 3:18, including making the tying free throw with 31.8 seconds left before overtime. Wheelock inbounded under the visitors' basket with 4.1 seconds remaining in a tie game, but a Leopard picked off the pass and narrowly missed a desperation heave from midcourt at the horn.
The hosts hit their first four attempts to open the game, eventually leading by an 18-6 count after 6:33 of action when senior Patsy DiNuzzo (Beaver, PA/Beaver) knocked down a three. Herrick's bucket at 6:02 drew the Leopards within 23-18, but Wheelock led by double figures for much of the remainder of the stanza, and DiNuzzo canned another long-range shot with less than 10 seconds to go to provide the hosts a 10-point halftime lead.
The Wildcats next head to Purchase, N.Y., for Manhattanville College's two-day Castle Classic this weekend, as Wheelock begins play when it faces the host on Friday at 8 p.m. Plattsburgh State University, a 2010 NCAA Tournament qualifier that is ranked 22nd in the D3hoops.com preseason national poll, and Western Connecticut State University, which is receiving national votes, are also competing in the tournament. Wentworth is at Southern Maine on Wednesday night.
At Chestnut Hill, Mass. (Brunelli Court)
WHEELOCK 87, WENTWORTH 80
Corey Therriault 11-20 1-2 32; Sam Herrick 6-12 9-16 21; Matt Harte 3-6 0-0 6; Denzel Sanders 2-3 2-2 6; Eric Prue 2-7 0-0 5; Derek Mayo 1-5 3-6 5; Dailon Wilson 1-2 0-0 3; Mike McClure 1-2 0-0 2; Keenan Burke-Pitts 0-2 0-0 0; Adam Dombrowski 0-4 0-0 0. Totals 27-63 15-26 80.
Kyle Pierce 5-10 13-15 23; Eric Rice 9-19 4-4 23; Daniel Main 0-4 12-14 12; Victor Kashouh 3-4 3-4 9; Max Kaim 2-7 5-6 9; Patsy DiNuzzo 2-3 0-0 6; Bashir Hudson 1-3 2-4 4; Adam Russo 0-0 1-2 1; Gamy Cilien 0-1 0-0 0; Elliot Hernandez 0-3 0-0 0; Daniel Higgins 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-55 40-49 87.
Wentworth..................... 27 43 10 - 80
Wheelock...................... 37 33 17 - 87
3-point goals--Wentworth 11-25 (Corey Therriault 9-14; Dailon Wilson 1-2; Eric Prue 1-5; Keenan Burke-Pitts 0-1; Adam Dombrowski 0-2; Sam Herrick 0-1), Wheelock 3-11 (Patsy DiNuzzo 2-2; Eric Rice 1-5; Max Kaim 0-2; Daniel Higgins 0-1; Daniel Main 0-1). Fouled out--Wentworth-Dailon Wilson; Keenan Burke-Pitts; Eric Prue, Wheelock-Daniel Main. Rebounds--Wentworth 42 (Sam Herrick 14), Wheelock 39 (Daniel Main 11). Assists--Wentworth 15 (Derek Mayo 5), Wheelock 12 (Victor Kashouh 3). Total fouls--Wentworth 32, Wheelock 21. Technical fouls--Wentworth-None, Wheelock-None. A-349