WESTON, Mass. – Regis College shot 67.9% from the floor (19-of-28) in the second half to overcome a four point halftime deficit and defeat Elms College, 91-74, on Thursday night in New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) men's basketball action.
Regis (9-11, 8-4 NECC) snaps a seven game losing-streak to the Blazers that includes last year's NECC Championship game. Elms has its five game winning-streak snapped and falls to 12-11 overall and 10-4 in league games.
Osanto Marc Jr. (Kissimmee, Fla.) staked the Pride to an early 6-2 lead, but Elms responded with a 10-0 run capped off by an Andre French (Torrington, Conn.) triple to make it a 12-6 game with 15:36 to play. The Pride chipped away and got within one at 12-11 following a Ryan Chambers (Abington, Mass.) three-pointer, and eventually took a 22-21 lead after an Ahmad Charles (Cambridge, Mass.) runner with 8:41 remaining.
The two teams traded baskets before back-to-back perfect trips at the freethrow line from Isaiah Odunlami (Providence, R.I.) and French gave the Blazers a 31-25 lead. Charles got the Pride as close as 36-34 with a pair of freebies, but the Blazers rattled off five-straight points to take a seven point lead with less than a minute to play. Jordan Monts (Springfield, Mass.) connected on a three-pointer with 14 seconds remaining for the last points of the period as Regis entered the break trailing 41-37.
Ryan Chambers and Andre French each led their respective teams with 13 points apiece at the half. Osanto Marc Jr. added 11 points for Regis, while Isaiah Odunlami had eight points for Elms. The Pride only mustered 34.5% shooting in the opening half (10-of-29) compared to 44.4% shooting (12-of-27) for the visitors.
The Blazers Kenny Lockett (Atlanta, Ga.) scored the opening basket of the second half to give Elms a six point lead early in the stanza, but the Pride used an 8-0 run over the next two minutes, to take a 45-43 lead and force a Blazers timeout. Another Chambers triple gave Regis a four point lead minutes later, before Derek Murphy (Columbia, Md.) knocked down back-to-back threes to tie the game at 50-all with 15:01 to play. Sam Jean-Gilles (Melrose, Mass.) answered with a pair of jumpers of his own, but a French three and a Lockett jumper gave Elms a one point advantage, 55-54, with 13:16 to play.
As they did in the opening half, the two teams traded leads, as it did seven times in the period, before Ahmad Charles connected on a three-ball to put Regis on top by four. Chris Leak Jr. (New Haven, Conn.) corralled a miss and laid it in to keep it a three point lead minutes later, but Andre French hit a layup to keep it a 65-64 game with 9:04 to play. The Pride then turned up the defense, sparking the offense to a 10-0 run to put the Pride on top 75-64 with 5:25 to play. Kenny Lockett ended the Regis run, but it was too little too late as the Pride ended the game outscoring Elms 16-7 and cruising to a 91-74 victory.
Regis won the rebounding battle 41-31 as well as the turnover battle, committing only 14 missteps to the Blazers 16. The Pride ended the night shooting 50.9% from the floor (29-of-57), while Elms ended up shooting 39.7% (23-of-58) from the field.
Ryan Chambers poured in a game-high 23 points, including five three-pointers, and added four rebounds and a pair of steals. Osanto Marc Jr. added 19 points and four rebounds, while Ahmad Charles scored 14 points to go with four rebounds and a game-high five assists. Sam Jean-Gilles had 12 points and seven rebounds, while Jordan Monts came off the bench to score eight points. Chris Leak Jr. also grabbed seven rebounds and chipped in five points.
Elms was paced by 22 points from Andre French, who added five rebounds and four assists. Kenny Lockett scored 20 points and grabbed six rebounds, to go with 10 points apiece from Derek Murphy and Isaiah Odunlami. Conny Ihearahu (Largo, Md.) added six points and a team-high seven rebounds in the setback.
The Crimson and Gold enjoy a short break before returning to action next Wednesday at Southern Vermont College for a 7:00 p.m. contest. Elms will try and rebound next Wednesday as well, travelling to Becker College for an 8:00 p.m. tip.