BIDDEFORD, Maine — The University of New England men’s basketball team scored 46 points off 37 turnovers by Eastern Nazarene College, on the way to a 105-96 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) triumph on Tuesday night (Jan. 30) at the Harold Alfond Forum.
Drew Muniz (Gloucester, Mass.) headed up the victorious effort with 14 points, and Ryan Matthews (Park Ridge, N.J.) had 11 more. Both Drew Coveney (Londonderry, N.H.) and Matt Lorman (Rutland, Vt.) registered nine points, while eight apiece came from Gavin Dibble (Greenport, N.Y.), Ryan Beatty (Rochester, Mass.), and Alex Kravchuk (Mansfield, Conn.).
The Nor’easters (9-11, 7-6 CCC) overcame 39 percent field-goal accuracy by only losing possession nine times, which resulted in 41 additional shot attempts compared to their opponents. UNE racked up 21 steals and 20 offensive rebounds to gain the extra chances.
When the Lions (7-13, 3-10 CCC) weren’t hampered by turnovers and finished their offensive trips, the shooting was quite efficient. Eastern Nazarene hit 54 percent overall (31-for-57), knocked down 56 percent from deep (15-of-27), and drained 19-of-22 at the charity stripe.
Josh Rice (Hanson, Mass.) paced the visitors with six triples and 20 points, to go with eight boards. Noah Cheney (Bend, Ore.) and Brenndan Rogers (Hanson, Mass.) both splashed 4-of-5 three-pointers to net 19 and 18 points, respectively. David Lopez (Miami, Fla.) had nine points and 12 rebounds, leading ENC to a 53-38 advantage on the glass. Jacob Waldroop (Newland, N.C.) dished out eight assists.
The Nor’easters broke away from the Lions early in the 2nd half. An 11-2 spurt kicked-off a nine-minute stretch where UNE doubled-up Eastern Nazarene (34-17) and established an 87-72 lead for the home squad.
With the victory, UNE head coach Ed Silva reached No.250 of his collegiate career.
Big Blue will head for league-leading Nichols College on Saturday (3 p.m.) for the second meeting in 12 days, looking for a similar result to the 99-85 win over Bison last Monday.