BRUNSWICK, Maine — Bryan Hurley scored 17 points and dished out eight assists to propel Bowdoin College to a 78-57 men’s basketball victory over the University of Maine-Presque Isle on Wednesday night.
Matt Palecki provided 15 points and six rebounds for the Polar Bears (12-4), while John Swords (8 rebounds) and Lucas Hausman provided 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Kevin Collins scored a game-high 18 points to pace the Owls (8-8). Chase Vicaire tallied 12 points and Maurice Harris added 10.
St. Joseph’s 56, Thomas 40
At Waterville, Saint Joseph’s College put together a 14-0 run midway through the second half to extend its lead to 20 points en route to victory over Thomas College on Wednesday night.
Emily Kehoe led the Monks of Standish (11-3) with a game-high 13 points and Morgan Cahill posted a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Katie McAllister and Taylor Reynolds finished with nine points each to lead Thomas (1-14). Ashleigh Gagne also added eight points and four assists.
North Carolina 87, Wake Forest 71
Brice Johnson led the way with 19 points on 8-of-11 from the field as the hot-shooting Tar Heels sprinted past the host Demon Deacons.
Kennedy Meeks scored 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting and added seven rebounds while Justin Jackson went 6-of-8 from the floor en route to 17 points for North Carolina (15-4, 5-1 ACC). Marcus Paige collected 12 points and eight assists as the Tar Heels shot 60.3 percent in their fourth straight win.
Codi Miller-McIntyre recorded 20 points, six rebounds and six assists for Wake Forest (9-10, 1-5), which has dropped four of five. Devin Thomas had 12 points and 12 boards while Mitchell Wilbekin and Konstantinos Mitoglou scored 10 apiece for the Demon Deacons.
North Carolina ended the first half with a 12-6 run to take a 40-34 lead into the break. The Tar Heels knocked down their first three shots of the second half to increase the gap to 10 points and made it seven of eight as Jackson’s layup upped the lead to 54-40 with just over 15 minutes left.
Michigan State 66, Penn State 60
Branden Dawson tallied 12 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks as the host Spartans held off the pesky Nittany Lions.
Gavin Schilling posted his second career double-double with 11 points and 10 boards for Michigan State (13-6, 4-2 Big Ten), which improved to 34-7 against Penn State. Denzel Valentine chipped in with 11 points while Travis Trice and Matt Costello contributed 10 apiece for the Spartans.
D.J. Newbill led the way with 18 of his 27 points in the second half for the Nittany Lions (12-7, 0-6), who has dropped four conference games by six points or fewer or in overtime during their six-game losing streak. Brandon Taylor had 10 points and was the only other Penn State player to finish in double figures.
Michigan State scored 10 of the game’s first 12 points and never trailed, but the Spartans were unable to shake the Nittany Lions, who pulled even for the first time at 37-37 with 12:17 to go on a free throw by Taylor. Despite committing 10 second-half turnovers, Penn State forged six more ties thereafter -the last coming at 51-51 — before Valentine hit a jumper to put Michigan State in front for good with just over four minutes left.
St. John’s 60, Marquette 57
Sir’Dominic Pointer recorded 15 points, 11 rebounds, five blocks, four assists and two steals as the host Red Storm posted a much-needed victory.
Rysheed Jordan added 15 points while Phil Greene IV and D’Angelo Harrison chipped in 11 apiece for St. John’s (13-5, 2-4 Big East), which had lost four of its previous five games. The Red Storm got a transition dunk by Greene to go up by three with 7.9 seconds left before Marquette’s Matt Carlino pulled up from just inside halfcourt, thinking he was about to be fouled, only to watch his heave rim out at the buzzer.
Carlino scored 21 points on 5-of-11 3-point shooting for the Golden Eagles (10-8, 2-4), who watched two of their starters — Derrick Wilson and Juan Anderson — go scoreless on the night. Steve Taylor Jr. added 13 points off the bench as Marquette failed to surpass 60 points for the fifth time in six contests.
St. John’s trailed by a point with under three minutes left when Pointer made a layup and a dunk on consecutive possessions, although Carlino’s steal led to Duane Wilson’s transition layup as Marquette got back within 56-55 with 57 seconds left. Harrison knocked down two foul shots with 14.7 seconds remaining to restore a three-point edge before the Red Storm intentionally fouled Carlino, who made both before Greene broke free for an easy slam.
Doubt lingers as scouts study Petty
MOBILE, Alabama — The stage was set for Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty to prove to NFL scouts that he has the skill-set to start at the next level in a pro-style scheme based on the makeup of roster at the Senior Bowl this week.
And while he showed some improvements during practice, there are still more questions than answers about Petty’s future in the NFL.
During Wednesday morning’s practice, Petty’s footwork was good. He displayed good movements skills with three- and five-step drops and improved timing with his targets.
However, he bobbled several snaps and had a tough time with the process from under center, appearing out of sync and uncomfortable. Petty made some nice throws, but his ball placement was up and down and he also seemed to be thinking too much as he makes the transition from a spread, shotgun offense at Baylor where most his reads came before the snap.
Throw in the job-interview type of setting, it’s a tough chore for Petty to learn on the go and read coverages while operating the offense in his drops and from within the pocket.
Can he become more comfortable with added reps? Probably.
But will Petty ever be comfortable enough to start in the NFL? That’s the big question and NFL teams likely won’t find that answer with any level of confidence this week.
It hasn’t happened since 1994, but unless Petty makes vast improvements the rest of the week and the draft process, there is a good chance the 2015 NFL Draft won’t have a senior quarterback drafted in the top 100 picks.
Abdullah could be top RB drafted
Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah will be in the top-75 mix and he could be the top senior running back drafted because of his natural burst, balance and playmaking skills as a ballcarrier.
However, deficiencies in pass protection stand out on tape and were exposed again during Tuesday’s practice. He is willing and tough, but his 198-pound frame lacks the base strength or upper-body power to control or stop rushers in their tracks.
Abdullah is a versatile talent who is fun to watch run the rock, but its clear his best role in the NFL is probably as a change-of-pace option where he won’t be tasked with protecting the pocket.
Crowder explosive receiver
Duke wide receiver Jamison Crowder again stood out as the most explosive pass catcher on offense for the North squad. His natural burst and route acceleration especially were impressive as he created separation, appearing to be a nightmare for defensive backs to cover in space. He does have a smaller catching radius, but for a player with such small hands (8 3/8 inches), Crowder has the focus and body control to make acrobatic catches look routine.
ECU’s Hardy struggles
East Carolina wide receiver Justin Hardy is the FBS all-time leader in catches, but you wouldn’t be able to tell by his performance on Tuesday. Several throws his way ended up on the ground.
Hardy had trouble extending from his body to pluck and finish, allowing the ball to pop off his hands. There is more than enough tape on Hardy for scouts to see what he can do as a pass-catcher, but it can be discouraging in this setting to see so many drops from a player who is viewed as a reliable slot option in the NFL.