Score: New England College 89, Dean College 77
Records: New England College (15-3, 8-1 NECC), Dean College (11-6, 6-3 NECC)
Location: Pieri Gymnasium, Franklin, Mass.
Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2019
Time: 7:00 PM
Despite 25 points from star guard Jordan Booker (Waterbury, Conn.) and a seventh straight double-double from Armani Baker (Pawtucket, R.I.) the Dean College Bulldogs fell to New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) leading New England College on Tuesday 89-77 in Franklin, Mass. Dean has now lost two straight after winning seven in a row. The Pilgrims earned their 15th win of the year and sit atop the conference standings at 15-3 overall and 8-1 in NECC play.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Dean jumped in front early, scooting to a 6-3 opening lead and holding the advantage for most of the first eight minutes. New England College took control with a 12-2 run midway through the first half as they turned a four point deficit into a six point advantage and forced Dean to call a timeout at the ten minute mark.
Booker's layup out of the timeout cut the lead to four, but back to back hoops from NEC, including a three pointer from Izaiah Winston-Brooks swelled the Pilgrim lead to seven. Booker responded right back with his own triple to cut the gap to four with six and a half minutes remaining in the frame.
Leading by six with 90 seconds left in the half, Jamaal Allen connected on two three pointers for the Pilgrims, creating a 12 point cushion for the visitors which they carried into the halftime break.
Two free throws from Winston-Brooks balooned the Pilgrim lead to 16 early in the second half, but Dean responded with a 6-0 spurt to close the gap to 10. NEC charged right back, ripping off nine straight points to open up a 60-41 lead, their biggest of the game, with just over five minutes gone by in the second half.
Over the next ten minutes, Dean was able to cut the lead to ten on multiple occasions and even got it to nine on a pair of Baker free throws with 6:35 remaining, but Winston-Brooks answered with a three point dagger and the Bulldogs would not threaten again. Timely shooting and stout defense sealed the game for the Pilgirms down the stretch and the visitors escaped a packed Pieri Gym with a 89-77 victory.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
Booker finished with 25 points on 9-18 shooting, nailing 5-10 from three point range. Baker scored 20 points and collected 10 rebounds and Ozwaldo Terrazas (Odessa, Texas.) scored eight points and added ten boards in his second start of the season.
Winston-Brooks led all scorers with 30 for the Pilgrims. Ricky Leonard and Jason Jones finished with 14 and 11 points respectively, and Allen came off the bench to shoot 4-6 from three for a total of 18 points.
Dean travels to Southern Vermont on Thurday for a 6:00 p.m. tilt against the defending NECC champions. NEC hosts league foe Elms on Thursday at 6:00 p.m.