Fitchburg, MA- The MCLA Men's Basketball team placed four players in double figures and rallied back from a seven point halftime deficit to roll past Fitchburg State 77-64 this evening in MASCAC play. The Trailblazers (5-9 overall, 2-2 MASCAC) were led by Keiland Cross and Joe Wiggins who each scored 16 points.
The Falcons drop to 5-10 and sit at 1-2 in the conference.
MCLA trailed in this one 38-31 at the half but outscored the Falcons 46-26 in the decisive second half of play. MCLA held the Falcons to just 29% shooting in the pivotal second half of play and forced 10 turnovers as they surged in front.
Fitchburg led 48-43 with 14:19 left to play before MCLA started to rally. MCLA held the Falcons to just two points over the next eight minutes of game action using a powerful 20-2 spurt to seize a 63-50 lead with 6:25 left to play. Joe Wiggins scored the final five points of the run and scored 11 of the 20 overall.
The Falcons got within nine points at 63-54 with 5:20 left to play, but Mike Demartinis would convert a pair of free throws and then drill a dagger three to extend the MCLA lead back out to 68-54 with four minutes left. The Falcons wouldn't threaten again.
MCLA, who was winless in the league last year, was paced by Keiland Cross and Wiggins who each ended with 16 points. Cross filled the stat sheet with 10 rebounds and 6 assists. Wiggins collected 6 boards in the win.
Other Trailblazers in double figures were Adam Conquest, who finished with a double double of 13 points and 12 rebounds. It's his third straight double double in the conference. Noah Yearsley ended with 11 points for MCLA.
Fitchburg's Jonathan Perez collected a game best 26 points which included seven triples. Brandon Harris was the only other Falcon in double figures with 13 points.
MCLA is back in action on Saturday as they travel to Fisher for a non league tilt.