Dolphins Eliminated From Skyline Tournament After Hard Fought Loss To St. Joseph’s-L.I.
Patchogue, N.Y. – The College of Mount Saint Vincent Men's Basketball team was eliminated from the Skyline Conference Tournament on Tuesday night after a hard fought 68-60 loss to third seeded St. Joseph's-L.I. Three Dolphins scored in double-figures on the night, with Cody Gauvard (Rockaway, N.Y.) and Maxxwell Faircloth (Bronx, N.Y.) each recording double-doubles.
Gauvard gave the Dolphins their only lead of the night when he opened the scoring in the first half minute of the contest. From there the Golden Eagles scored the next four points to take a slim two point advantage. Mount Saint Vincent would tie the score twice following the lead change but would not be able to pull back in front the rest of the night.
St. Joseph's-L.I. would open up some breathing room late in the half after a 13-4 spurt that pushed it front by 10 points with 2:21 left before halftime. The two teams would trade buckets from there, including a triple from Shaquille Cunningham (Brooklyn, N.Y.) as the Golden Eagles headed into halftime with a 32-23 lead.
Mount Saint Vincent shot just 33.3-percent from the floor in the opening 20 minutes and only had four players score, with Faircloth and Gauvard leading the way with eight points apiece. St. Joseph's-L.I. shot just under 41-percent for the half with Oliver Laurent leading all scorers with 12 points.
Coming out of halftime, the Golden Eagles quickly extended their lead to a game-high 15 points after an 11-5 spurt which was keyed by a triple from Vincent Russo. The lead would stay in double figures until the back-to-back jumpers from Gauvard brought the Dolphins to within 45-36 with 11:38 left in regulation.
Mount Saint Vincent would battle back to slice its deficit to just two points following a bucket and free-throw from Cunningham with just over two minutes left in the tilt. The conversion capped off a 15-8 spurt for the Dolphins covering over nine minutes giving the Dolphins a chance in the closing minutes.
Leading by the two point advantage, St. Joseph's-L.I. used a basket from Trey Black, a triple from Steve Velasquez and 10 free-throws in the final minute to hang on for the opening round victory. After Cunningham cut the Mount deficit to a pair of points, the Dolphins were outscored 15-9 in the final two minutes of the contest.
Gauvard finished the night 7-for-20 for the Dolphins from the field on his way to 17 points to compliment a career-high 14 rebounds. He also chipped in with two assists, a pair of steals and a blocked shot.
Faircloth posted his fourth double-double of the season after coming off the bench to score 10 points and pull down 11 rebounds. Cunningham finished the night 7-for-16 from the floor overall on his way to 16 points for the Dolphins.
Overall on the night, the Mount shot 38.8-percent from the floor, but went just 3-for-18 from behind the arc. St. Joseph's-L.I. was also able to turn 11 Mount Saint Vincent turnovers into 17 points on the night.
The Golden Eagles also struggled in the tilt as they were held to 20 points under their season scoring average. They also led the league with 304 three-pointers on the season and were held to just three by the Dolphins. St. Joseph's-L.I. did manage to get four players in double-figures on the night, led by 18 points from Laurent, after shooting 40.7-percent overall.
The big difference in the game on Tuesday came at the free-throw line. Mount Saint Vincent finished the night 5-for-8 from the stripe, while St. Joseph's-L.I. converted 21 of their 27 chances. Three players for the Golden Eagles had at least six attempts, with Velazquez going 7-for-8 on the night.
At 15-11 following Tuesday's loss the Dolphins will await word on a possible ECAC Metro Division Tournament bid. The tournament field will be announced on Monday, February 28.