Le Moyne Battles Past Stonehill, 68-65

Sophomore Pierce Cumpstone shot 6-for-9 from the field and converted 5-for-7 three-pointers on his way to 17 points off the bench tonight. (PHOTO BY Emily Reynolds)

Champion three lifts Dolphins to fifth-straight win 

EASTON, Mass. (January 28, 2014) – Le Moyne College survived a hard-fought 68-65 victory over Stonehill College in Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball action at Merkert Gymnasium tonight.

Senior Nate Champion (Logansport, Ind./Logansport) led Le Moyne to its fifth straight win with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field, including 2-for-4 from three-point range, drilling a go ahead triple with 36-seconds to play to cap a rally from eight points down with 4:45 remaining. He also made both free-throw attempts, dished out seven assists and added three rebounds and two steals. Junior Nate Gause (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Poughkeepsie) scored a team-high 17 points off the bench for the Dolphins with four rebounds and four assists, while postgrad Jim Janson (Scotia, N.Y./Scotia-Glenville) added 15 points on 7-of-10 shooting, five blocked shots and four boards. Sophomore Connor Mahoney (Hanover, Mass./BC High) chipped in with 11 points on 4-of-8 shooting, including 3-for-7 from beyond the arc, and six rebounds.

Sophomore Pierce Cumpstone (Bainbridge Township, Ohio/Kenston) led Stonehill with 17 points off the bench on 6-of-9 shooting, including 5-for-7 from three-point range, and four rebounds. Classmate Adam Bramanti (Middleton, Mass./Masconomet Regional) added 15 points on 4-of-9 shooting, including 3-for-8 from beyond the arc, while converting all four free-throws to go with five rebounds, four assists and four steals. Freshman Ryan Logan (Fredericktown, Ohio/Fredericktown) registered 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting, connecting on his lone three and 2-of-3 free-throws, with four rebounds (three offensive), four assists, four steals and a blocked shot. Junior Jack Cole (New Providence, N.J./New Providence) chipped in with nine points and a game-high eight boards.

Sophomore Adam Bramanti added 15 points, five rebounds, four assists and four steals. (PHOTO BY Jan Volk/SportsPix)

Le Moyne finished shooting 49-percent (25-for-51) from the field, including 59.3% (16-27) in the first half when it connected on 6-of-11 (54.5%) three-pointers, and drained 9-of-10 (90%) free-throws. The Dolphins, which shot just 37.5% (9-24) from the floor in the second half, including 3-for-11 (27.3%) from deep, held a 29-28 rebounding edge for the night. Stonehill shot 42.6-percent (23-for-54) on the night after connecting at 48.1% (13-27) in the opening half, including 8-for-16 (50%) from long distance. The Skyhawks converted 9-of-11 (81.8%) free-throws and turned 17 Le Moyne turnovers into a 22-16 advantage in points off and had its bench outscore the Dolphins reserves 21-17.

Stonehill trailed by as much as 12 late in the first half before closing within five (40-35) at the intermission. After a Cole layup 1:21 into the second half, Le Moyne pushed its lead back to eight (45-37) after a three-pointer by sophomore Qwadere Lovell (Mount Vernon, N.Y./Mount Vernon) three minutes in. The Skyhawks responded with a 9-2 rally to close the gap to a point (47-46) after a jumper by sophomore Carter Smith (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington) with 13:02 remaining.

Champion answered initially with a jumper at the other end, but Stonehill scored seven of the next nine points to take a four point lead (53-49) after two free-throws by Logan. Cumpstone put the Skyhawks in front (51-49) with a three-pointer during that stretch. The Skyhawks lead was two (55-53) with 7:30 to play, when they scored six straight to open their first eight point cushion (61-53) on two free-throws by sophomore Josh Heyliger (Bronx, N.Y./The Hill School) with 5:24 remaining.

Stonehill's lead was still eight (63-55) after a Logan layup with 4:45 to play when Le Moyne used an 11-2 run to regain the lead (66-65) on Champions go-ahead triple with 36-seconds to go. The Skyhawks missed at the other end and then fouled Lovell, who made both of his free-throws, with 21-seconds remaining. Logan gathered a big offensive rebound after a missed three-pointer with seven seconds left. After a timeout with 1.2-seconds on the clock, Stonehill inbounded the ball in front of its own bench and after Cumpstone collected the inbounds pass, had his heel come down out of bounds as he turned to shoot, to end the comeback effort.

Stonehill (5-13, 2-11 NE-10) hits the road where it will play four of its next five starting Saturday at The College of Saint Rose at 3:30 p.m. The Skyhawks return home the following Saturday, February 8, to host Saint Michael's College at 3:30 p.m. Le Moyne (12-7, 9-4 NE-10) hosts Franklin Pierce University on Saturday at 2 p.m.

For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter and Facebook. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks mobile app on iTunes and the Android Market.

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