Stonehill Dominates Glass to Top Saint Rose, 72-62

Senior Mike Kernan pulled down a career-best 19 rebounds today, finishing with his 14th career double-double. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane) 

Kernan double-double keys 48-30 Skyhawks rebounding advantage

EASTON, Mass. (January 29, 2010) – Stonehill College, ranked fourth in this week's NCAA Division II East Regional rankings, turned in a dominating rebounding performance in posting a 72-62 victory over The College of Saint Rose, ranked seventh in the region, in Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball action at Merkert Gymnasium this afternoon.

Senior Mike Kernan (Medford, N.J./Shawnee) led the rebounding effort for Stonehill as he notched his fifth double-double of the season (14th career) with 11 points and a career-high 19 rebounds (six offensive). Senior Daniel Heppert (Richmond, Va./Benedictine) led the Skyhawks with a career-best 19 points, aided by 11-for-12 shooting at the line, and five rebounds, while junior Ivan Almeida (Praia, Cape Verde) contributed 14 points, on 6-of-11 shooting from the field, seven rebounds, two assists and two steals. Junior Patrick Lee (Fayetteville, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius) chipped in with nine points, shooting 4-for-5 from the field, and seven boards.

Junior Rob Gutierrez (Brooklyn, N.Y./John Adams) led Saint Rose with 18 points, shooting 7-for-11 from the field, including 1-for-2 from three-point range, and converting 3-of-5 free-throws, to go with three rebounds and two steals. Sophomore Andre Pope (White Plains, N.Y./Iona Prep) added 16 points, shooting 4-for-8 from beyond the arc, three assists and two steals, while junior Brian Hanuschak (Cumberland, R.I./St. Andrews) contributed 12 points and six rebounds.

Stonehill finished shooting 41.7-percent (25-for-60) from the field and a 48-30 rebounding advantage, pulling down 19 on the offensive end. The Skyhawks registered a 20-6 edge in second chance points and the bench outscored the Saint Rose reserves, 16-8. The Golden Knights shot 35.2-percent (19-for-54) from the field, including 9-for-28 (32.1%) in the first half.

Senior Daniel Heppert led the Skyhawks with a career-high 19 points today. (PHOTO BY Richard Orr) 

Stonehill used a 17-4 run in the second half to take control of the game. Junior Sheldon Griffin (Pittsburgh, Pa./Warwick) scored a layup with 15:58 remaining in regulation to give Saint Rose a three point lead (37-34). Stonehill scored the next nine points to regain the lead for good and open a six point lead (43-37) after a Lee tip-in with 12:46 remaining. Bromirski answered with a three on the Golden Knights next possession, but the Skyhawks scored seven of the next eight points to push their lead to double-figures (51-41) for the first time after a pair of Andre Tongo (Acton, Mass./Acton-Boxborough) free-throws with 8:39 to go.

Saint Rose drew back within seven (55-48) after a Gutierrez three with 7:07 left, but he was whistled for his fourth foul and then was issued a technical, ending his night and Heppert canned three of the four ensuing free-throws to push the lead back to ten (58-48) with 6:56 remaining. The Golden Knights closed within eight three times down the stretch, but Stonehill answered each time, opening as much as an 11 point lead on five occasions to seal the win.

Stonehill opened a six point lead (17-11) after an Almeida layup eight and a half minutes into the first half. Saint Rose followed with a 10-2 run to take the lead (21-19) after two free-throws from freshman Dominykas Milka (Queens, N.Y./Christ the King) with 8:25 remaining in the half. The Golden Knights lead was three (26-23) after a Gutierrez jumper with 2:55 left in the frame before the Skyhawks closed the half with a 7-2 spurt to carry a two point lead (30-28) into the lockerroom after a layup from sophomore Brian Hamor (Guilderland, N.Y./Bishop Gibbons) with 56-seconds to go.

Stonehill (16-4, 11-4 NE-10), winners of three straight and 11 of its last 12, is back in action on Wednesday when it visits Franklin Pierce University at 7:30 p.m. The Skyhawks return home next Saturday to host the University of Massachusetts Lowell at 3:30 p.m. Saint Rose (13-7, 8-7 NE-10) visits Assumption College on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.

Postgame Interviews