WATERVILLE, Maine — After Colby College battled back to take the lead, Middlebury College used an 18-7 run over the final 5:20 of the contest to pull out an 84-75 victory in NESCAC men’s basketball Friday at Wadsworth Gymnasium.
Middlebury, ranked 16th nationally, moved to 17-3 overall and 5-2 in the league heading into Saturday’s 3 p.m. game at Bowdoin College. The Mules, 10-10 overall and 1-6 in the conference, will play host to Hamilton College at 3 p.m. Saturday.
Colby’s Patrick Stewart, who led all scorers with 29 points, nailed a 3-point shot with 5:30 left to give the Mules a 68-66 lead. Middelbury’s Matt St. Amour, who had 27 points, came back 10 seconds later to nail a 3-point shot to put the Panthers up for good at 69-68.
St. Amour added a layup with 4:35 remaining for a 71-68 lead and Jake Brown hit 1-for-2 from the foul line to make the lead four points.
Colby continued to battle and cut the margin to 75-73 on two free throws by Ethan Schlager. Middlebury received a layup from Jack Daly with 2:27 remaining and a jumper from Nick Tarantino for a 79-73 lead with 1:49 to go.
Brown finished with 15 points, five rebounds, and three assists for the Panthers. St. Amour added nine rebounds and four assists. Daly had a solid all-around game with 10 points, nine rebounds, and a game-high seven assists. Eric McCord added 10 points and Tarantino had eight.
Stewart was 8-for-8 from the foul line, had six rebounds, three blocked shots, and three steals. Schlager added 13 points and three assists, while Sam Jefferson had 10 points. Dean Weiner came off the bench with eight points for the Mules.
Middlebury shot 53.1 percent from the field and had a 48-31 rebounding advantage, but the Mules stayed in the game by committing just eight turnovers