Big 2nd half surge carries Statesmen by Dutchmen 72-61

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GENEVA, N.Y.—The Hobart College basketball team used a 23-4 run through the middle of the second half to win its regular season finale 72-61 over Union College in Bristol Gym tonight. Senior forward Richie Bonney led the Statesmen with game-highs of 26 points and 11 rebounds.
 
Bonney was 11-of-14 shooting and 4-of-6 at the line. He was joined in double digits by senior guard Joe Gibbons, who had 12 points and four assists, and junior guard Connor Rehbaum, who also scored 12 points. Junior guard Trey Blanding registered eight points and a career-high matching 10 assists, including nine in the first half.
 
Union's starting five was limited to a combined 15 points on the night. All three of the Dutchmen's double digit efforts came off the bench. Deshon Burgess was 8-of-11 at the line and notched a team-high 12 points. William Hython added 11 points and a team-high six rebounds and Laurent Firlotte chipped in 10 points.
 
The Statesmen (19-6, 13-3) had the lead for all but a minute in the first half, using a 10-2 run to build its largest lead of the stanza. Rehbaum and first-year guard Thomas Campion started the run with back-to-back 3-pointers followed by buckets from Gibbons and Bonney to take a 25-14 lead with 8:35 remaining before the break.
 
Union got within three on Hython's layup at 1:40, and had a chance to get even closer after a Hobart turnover, but Bonney came up with a steal near midcourt and broke free for a breakaway dunk. The Dutchmen turned the ball over on their ensuing possession giving the Statesmen the half's final look at the basket. Bonney made a layup thanks to a Blanding assist, sending Hobart into the break ahead 38-31.
 
The Statesmen pushed their lead to 12 early in the second half, but Union fought back to make it a six-point game by the 14:19 mark. That's when Hobart took control with its decisive run. The Statesmen scored seven straight points, including a traditional 3-point play by Bonney to make it 55-42. After trading buckets to 57-46, Campion drilled another 3 that sparked 14 straight points by the home team.
 
For the game, Hobart shot 48 percent from the field, including 59 percent in the first half. The Statesmen only committed nine turnovers and just one in the second half.
 
Union shot 41 percent from the floor, but struggled from long range (1-14). The Dutchmen connected on 12-of-16 at the line and had a slight edge on the boards (35-33).
 
Union returns home to host Skidmore at 8 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 21. Hobart's next game will be on Wednesday, Feb. 26, when the Statesmen host a Liberty League Tournament semifinal. Hobart has secured its fourth straight Liberty League regular season title, but none of the other three seeds have been determined. Opponent and game time will be announced on HWSAthletics.com on Saturday.