Thoroughbreds wear down Hartwick 96-85

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ONEONTA, N.Y.— Edvinas Rupkus and Dakpe Yiljep combined for 46 points to lead the Skidmore College basketball team to a 96-85 road win over Hartwick College Saturday afternoon in Lambros Arena.


The Thoroughbreds are 2-0, while the Hawks drop to 0-2.


Four Skidmore players were in double figures, led by 25 points from Rupkus. The preseason All-American was 11-11 from the free throw line and added nine rebounds, seven assists and a block.  Yiljep was a hot 8-11 from the floor, scoring 15 of his 21 points in the second half. Chase Ta had 13 points and seven assists, while Jack Byrne chipped in 14 points off the bench.


Hartwick's Kevin Townes led all scorers with 30 points on 7-19 field goal shooting. He was 5-12 from beyond the ark and 11-12 from the line. His 12 missed field goals was one less than Skidmore's entire starting five combined.


The Hawks only lead was the opening basket. The Thoroughbreds led the entire way after that, but Hartwick hung around, staying within two possessions until Skidmore opened the second half with a 10-0 run to go up 13, 58-45 with 16:11 to play.


Hartwick whittled the lead away throughout the second half, cutting the lead to one 80-79 with 3:46 left. 


It stayed tight for the next two minutes, with Skidmore up 87-83 with 1:58 left. Brandon  LaForest hit a pair of free throws to pull Hartwick to within two 87-85 at the 1:40 mark, but that would be it for the Hawks. The Thoroughbreds kept Harwick off the board the rest of the way. Rupkus converted an old fashion three-point play with 1:17 left and Yiljep hit a deep three with :35 left to put the game away.


Skidmore opens its home schedule with a rare Monday night game at 7 p.m. against Plattsburgh State.