Bramswig and Augustine Lead Manhattanville Past Hamilton, 73-64

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PURCHASE, N.Y. – The frontcourt tandem of junior Jack Bramswig (Pleasantville, N.Y./Pleasantville) and graduate student Craig Augustine (Citrus, Fla./Citrus) combined for 32 points and 21 rebounds to lead Manhattanville to its second straight win to start the year, a hard-fought 73-64 victory over Hamilton in a non-conference matchup on Saturday night at Kennedy Gymnasium.
In the first meeting between the two programs in almost 26 years, the back-and-forth action was seemingly worth the wait for the Valiant fans in attendance, as Manhattanville outscored Hamilton 20-10 over the final 6:48 of the contest to pull away with the win.
Bramswig was huge on both ends of the court for Manhattanville, recording his first double-double of the year by leading all players with 21 points and 13 rebounds in a game-best 36 minutes. Augustine also had a second straight excellent outing to begin the season, scoring 11 points and adding a career-high eight rebounds.
Freshman Anthony Maestre (Bronx, N.Y./Mount St. Michael Academy) provided a spark off the bench with a season-best 15 points, five rebounds and three assists, while sophomore Wills Flynn (Miami, Fla./Westminster Christian) chipped in with 12 points thanks to a sparkling 10-of-10 effort from the charity stripe.
Greg Newton led the way for Hamilton with 19 points, while Bradley Gifford flirted with a double-double and finished with eight points and a team-best 10 rebounds.
The Continentals held an advantage on the scoreboard for most of the opening half, opening up a seven-point lead on a pair of occasions, but Manhattanville battled back to get into the locker rooms tied at 37. A three-point play by Augustine and a Maestre triple on back-to-back possessions shaved six points off that lead with 2:17 to go, and Bramswig knotted the score with an impressive fall-back jumper from just inside the top of the arc as the buzzer went off.
The Valiants shot only 39.3 percent (11 of 28) in the first half, but were helped by 24 trips to the free-throw line in a foul-plagued first frame. Hamilton shot at a 65.0 percent (13 for 20) clip from inside the arc, but missed all seven of their three-point attempts to finish at 48.1 percent for the half.
The visitors again clung to a small lead to start the second half, but Flynn sunk a pair of free throws with 10:22 remaining to give the Valiants their first lead since midway through the first half at 48-47. Hamilton took its last lead of the game on a three-point play by Newton with 7:02 left on the clock, but Maestre erased that a minute later with his second three of the night that put Manhattanville ahead 55-54 with 5:57 left.
After the teams exchanged buckets, Bramswig sent a buzz through the crowd by knocking down a three-pointer of his own – the first of his career, no less – to give the home team a four-point cushion with 3:38 to go. After a Matt Hart layup returned it to a one-possession game, Bramswig made another impact in a more customary fashion, taking a pass from Flynn and slamming the ball home to make it 62-58 with 2:14 on the clock.
Four Flynn free throws and a layup from Bramswig off a nice feed from freshman Darius Christmas (Hackensack, N.J./Paramus Catholic) helped to seal the win for the home team, who shot just 37.9 percent in the second half but was helped by Hamilton's 31.0 percent effort from the floor.
For the game, Manhattanville connected on 38.6 percent (22 for 57) of its attempts, with Hamilton not much better at 39.3 percent (22 for 56). The Continentals were hurt by a lack of long-range accuracy, as the visitors went 1 for 15 from beyond the arc.
Manhattanville (2-0) will play its final game before heading into the Thanksgiving break on Tuesday night, as the Valiants look to remain unbeaten against local rival Purchase. The Battle for Anderson Hill Road will begin at 8 p.m. at Kennedy Gym.