Williamstown, MA- The MCLA men's basketball team committed 27 turnovers and shot just 28% as the Trailblazers fell to Pine Manor 70-62 this afternoon in a contest played at Chandler Gymnasium on the campus of Williams College. With the win, the Gators improve to 9-13 while MCLA drops to 8-14 overall.
Jamel Hamans and Louis Savage each ended with a game high of 15 points for Pine Manor. Savage completed the double double with 10 rebounds, he also added 2 assists and 3 steals. Jon Higgenbotham scored 11 points and filled the stat sheet with 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 5 steals for the Gators.
The Pine Manor full court pressure gave MCLA fits all day long. MCLA had 15 first half turnovers as the Gators built a 33-28 lead at the break. The Gators would open up their largest lead of the afternoon with 9:30 left to play when Hamans converted a four point play making it 53-40. The lead was at 63-52 with 2:53 left before MCLA made a frantic rally.
The Trailblazers went on an 10-2 spurt to get within three points at 65-62 with a minute to go. Noah Yearsley and Adam Conquest combined for eight of the ten points in the run. MCLA committed a foul on the next possession sending Savage to the line. He made one of two to put the Gators up four at 66-62. MCLA's Ki-Shawn Monroe drove the length of the floor, but his layup attempt was turned away at the rim by Ellis Reid. Forced again to foul, Pine Manor's Savage knocked down both key free throws to extend the lead to 68-62 with 34 seconds left to play.
Hayden Bird missed a three point attempt for MCLA and when Pine Manor grabbed the rebound, the game was essentially over. Hamans converted a pair of FT's to provide the final margin for PMC.
The Gators shot 38% in the win and overcame 23 turnovers of their own. They turned it over 14 times in the second half.
MCLA was paced by Conquest's team high of 13 points. He notched 7 rebounds for the Trailblazers. Yearsley was the only other Trailblazer in double figures with 10 points. The Trailblazers struggled on the perimeter connecting on just 1-19 three point attempts (5%).
MCLA resumes conference play on Wednesday night when they head to Salem State.