Springfield, Mass. - January 25, 2017 - The Springfield College men's basketball team picked up an important conference win after besting Emerson, 77-60, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play in Blake Arena on Wednesday.
Springfield improves to 9-9, 3-4 in conference play, while the Lions dropped to 4-14, 0-7.
Trey Witter (Unionville, Conn.) came off the bench to net a career-best 21 points as he connected on 4-of-6 from beyond the arc. Classmate Jake Ross (Northampton, Mass.) added 15 points and Andy McNulty (West Springfield, Mass.) tied a career-high with seven assists to go along with 14 points and four steals. Heath Post (Cheshire, Conn.) hauled in a game-high nine rebounds and Keegan McDonough (Bath, Maine) totaled nine points, six rebounds, three assists, and two steals.
Emerson was paced by Geoffrey Gray's 35 points, while Michael Sheng added eight points. Springfield held a 15-5 edge in second-chance points after holding a 39-28 edge on the glass.
A conventional three-point play by Ross gave the Pride a 9-4 cushion, only to have Emerson answer with an 8-3 push to knot the game at 12-all on a jumper by Gray with 11:40 on the clock. A deep trifecta from McNulty kickstarted a 8-0 push to give the hosts a 20-12 lead, and after Emerson closed within 20-17, a McDonough jumper in the lane forced the visitors into a timeout with 3:28 left facing a seven-point deficit. The Lions would climb within four on a triple by John Geary, but Springfield produced a half-ending 8-1 surge and went into the break with a 32-21 lead when McNulty buried an off-balance triple at the horn. Five different players scored at least six points for Springfield in the opening 20 minutes.
The Pride's lead would balloon to 35-21 on a free throw by McNulty in the opening moments of the second and Witter connected on his third trifecta of the game at the 14:07 mark to make it a 47-31 contest. Springfield continued to control the pace of the game, pushing its lead to 20 on a corner three by Ross with nine minutes left in regulation. The Lions would get no closer than 16 before Post would finish off a McNulty alley-oop in the final minutes to give the Pride's its largest lead, 77-50. The hosts shot 50% from the field in the second half en route to the 77-60 conference triumph.
Springfield will continue its homestand on Saturday when it plays host to rival WPI at 12:00 pm.