BOSTON, Mass. - Emmanuel College suffered an 88-71 setback at the hands of Albertus Magnus College in Great Northeast Athletic Conference men's basketball action played in the Jean Yawkey Center on Thursday night. The Falcons got 32 points from sophomore guard Darius Watson (New Britain, Conn.) to extend their win streak to eleven games, improving to 16-1 on the season. Albertus remains undefeated in conference play at 11-0. The loss drops the Saints to 7-11 overall and 6-5 in league play.
Emmanuel senior forward Isaiah Duke (Albany, N.Y.) opened up the scoring for the Saints, but an and-one at the other end by Albertus' Jefferson Lora (Bronx, N.Y.) quickly gave the lead back to the Falcons. A quick hoop by Theo Robinson (Springfield, Mass.) and a trey from the wing by Michael Mailhot (Norwich, Conn.) put the hosts up, 7-3.
Three consecutive hoops by Watson knotted the spread at 9-all through 15 minutes of play. Another three-ball from Mailhot stretched the Emmanuel lead to five points at 18-13 with 13:20 left in the half.
The Saints held on to the lead for the next seven minutes of action, until Ray Askew (Hamden, Conn.) buried a pair of jumpers and Spencer Smith (New Haven, Conn.) tipped in an offensive board to swing the lead back to the visitors at 29-28 with six minutes left in the half.
The Falcons took an eight-point lead after a hoop by Watson to go up 38-30 with 3:44 remaining in the half. Emmanuel's Xavier Everson (Rochester, N.Y.) converted an old fashioned three-point play at the other end to keep the Saints close, trailing 42-38 with just over a minute remaining in the half.
After pair of freebies from Julian Sanders (Trumbull, Conn.) and a put-back by Watson, the Falcons carried a 46-42 edge into the locker room at halftime. Albertus led Emmanuel on the glass in the first half, 23-19. Both teams shot well from the floor in the opening stanza with the Falcons hitting 17-37 (45.9%) and the Saints going 16-36 (44.4%).
Watson led all scorers at the break with 16 points, while Askew chipped in with 9 for the visitors. Emmanuel was led by Mailhot's 11 points, as the junior guard hit 3 of 5 from downtown. Duke added 10 first-half points for Emmanuel.
Out of the break, Albertus netted two hoops on consecutive possessions, before Mailhot buried another one from behind the arc. Mailhot dialed in from long range again with his 5th three-pointer of the night at 17:35 and the Saints trailed 55-48.
A put-back in the paint by Lora extended the Falcons lead to 63-50, as the visitors opened the second half on a 17-8 run. A runner in the lane by Watson made it a seventeen-point game at 73-56, with 8:30 to go in the contest. An Askew dunk on the break, followed by an alley-oop from Zach Dugas (Monroe, Conn.) to Askew, put Albertus on top, 79-60, at the five-minute mark.
The Falcons maintained their double-figure lead for the remainder of the night and pulled away with the 88-71 win. Albertus pounded Emmanuel on the boards, hauling in 49 rebounds to just 30 by the Saints. The Falcons shot lights out in the second half, connecting on 19 of 31 attempts from the field (61.3%).
Watson's 32 points led all scorers, as he shot 15 for 22 from the floor in 37 minutes of action. Askew notched a double-double of 23 points and a game-high 15 boards. Dugas also recorded a double-double with 10 rebounds and a game-high 10 assists. Lora added 11 points, 6 rebounds and 5 blocked shots for the Falcons.
Emmanuel was led by Mailhot, who netted 22 points and dished out 6 assists. Duke finished with 16 points, 5 boards and 4 assists, while Robinson hit for 13 points in the effort for Emmanuel.
The Saints will return to GNAC action this weekend, when they travel to Nashua, N.H. to take on the Raiders of Rivier College in a 3:00 PM start.