BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott men's basketball team edged Roger Williams University, 64-61, on Thursday night in a tightly contested Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) matchup at MacDonald Gymnasium.
Leading 52-51 with 10:31 to play in the game, Endicott withstood several rallies from the Hawks down the stretch as the Gulls only led Roger Williams by more than two possessions on two separate occasions for the remainder of the contest (60-53, 7:08 | 62-55, 3:32).
A 1-for-2 showing at the free throw line for Hawks' junior forward Josh Syska (Peabody, Mass.) put the score at 62-58 with 1:53 remaining, but Endicott junior guard Stephen Basden (Lynn, Mass.) secured a loose ball, offensive rebound near his own bench before being fouled to earn a trip to the free throw line with 26-seconds to play.
Basden canned one of his two attempts to bump the advantage back to five points at 63-58; however, Roger Williams didn't go away quietly as Syska buried a three-pointer from the left corner to make it a one possession game once more at 63-61.
Endicott junior guard Max Motroni (West Warwick, R.I.) then went on to convert one of his two free throw attempts with 11-seconds remaining, which helped secure the victory as Hawks' senior forward Josh McCourt (Lincoln, R.I.) was forced to take an NBA-range three-pointer from the left wing that missed its target and ricocheted off the back of the rim, eventually falling into the hands of Gulls' junior forward Daquan Sampson (Germantown, Md.) as the final buzzer sounded.
Endicott's Kamahl Walker (Worcester, Mass.) led all scorers with 20 points (6-12 FG, 2-5 3PT, 6-6 FT) alongside two assists and two steals in 28 minutes of action.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Sampson registered 11 points, eight rebounds, a career-high six assists, two blocks, and one steal.
- Motroni added 18 points, four rebounds, a career-high four steals, and two assists in the win.
- Basden finished with four points, a season-high eight rebounds, and two steals.
- Endicott assisted on 13 out of 18 made baskets, pushing its streak of ten or more assists as a team in a game to 12 this season.
- The Gulls lead the all-time series 24-7, and also a 16-4 advantage at home versus the Hawks dating back to 2002.
- Tonight's win marks the third time Endicott has won a game this season after trailing at halftime.
FOR THE FOES
- Nick Marini (Loudonville, N.Y.) paced the guests with 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field, and 4-of-6 shooting at the free throw line.
- Andrew Wasik (Gainesville, Fla.) chipped in with 13 points, six rebounds, and three assists.
- Trevor Fahmy (Bedford, N.H.) grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds, while Syska, McCourt, Austin Coene (Tyngsborough, Mass.), Jaylen Jennings (Norwalk, Conn.), and Conor O'Brien (Sharon, Mass.) all contributed at least six points to the offense.
- Coene led the group with seven points on 3-of-9 shooting from the floor (1-for-2 3PT).
Endicott (7-5, 4-1 CCC) travels to Western New England University on Saturday, January 9 for a CCC matchup against the Golden Bears at 3 p.m. Roger Williams (4-8, 2-3 CCC) hosts Wentworth this Saturday in a conference tilt at 3 p.m.