NEWTON, Mass. – #4 Mount Ida College (17-9) defeated fifth-seeded Saint Joseph’s College (13-13), 91-83, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Men’s Basketball Tournament Quarterfinal on Tuesday evening.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
In a game featuring nine lead changes and 10 tie scores, the Mustangs could not put the Monks away until they connected on seven of eight free throw attempts during the final 20 seconds of play. Saint Joseph’s fought elimination until the final buzzer, as senior John Crawley (Fitchburg, Mass.) made a layup with 13 seconds left and sophomore Ian Mileikis (Auburn, Maine) drilled a three-pointer seven seconds later, but it would not be enough in what was a season-ending loss.
The Monks lost despite posting their second-highest field goal (52.8%) and free throw (91.7%) efforts of the season, as turnovers proved to be their undoing in the setback. Mount Ida netted 22 points off 17 SJC miscues and also turned 12 offensive rebounds into 21 second-chance points on the evening.
For the Mustangs, the GNAC Tournament victory is a program-first in 10 seasons as a member of the conference. The win also counts as Mount Ida’s first postseason triumph in 16 years. The Mustangs advance to the GNAC semifinals and will face top-seeded Albertus Magnus College, who routed #8 Anna Maria College, 92-67, in other quarterfinal action tonight, in New Haven on Thursday.
LEADERS – SAINT JOSEPH’S:
· Junior forward Aaron Hall (Haverhill, Mass.) led all players with 20 points and 10 rebounds
· Crawley came off the bench to net 16 points off a 7-8 shooting effort
· Mileikis netted 14 points with four rebounds
· Junior forward Quinn Richardson-Newton (Saco, Maine) scored 10 points
· Freshman guard Mario Nery (Bronx, N.Y.) chipped in with eight points and five assists
· Sophomore forward Marc Corey (Londonderry, N.H.) contributed eight points, six caroms, and three assists
LEADERS – MOUNT IDA:
· Kevin Conner (Mansfield, Mass.) tallied 18 points and six rebounds
· Jayson Clark (Austin, Texas) registered 12 points, four rebounds, seven assists, and four steals
· Ethan Dujon (Warwick, R.I.) added 13 points in 16 minutes off the bench
· Joey DeFillippi (Bristol, Conn.) chipped in with 13 points and three assists
· Dennis Ross (Portland, Maine) scored ten points off a 4-5 shooting effort