Stonehill Tops Dominican in Opener, 72-67

Senior Jack Cole led the Skyhawks top a season-opening win over Dominican with 16 points and eight rebounds. (PHOTO BY Paul Fitzgerald Photography)

Cole leads four Skyhawks in double-figures with 16 points 

WORCESTER, Mass. (November 15, 2014) – Stonehill College got its 2014-15 season off to a winning start with a 72-67 decision over Dominican (N.Y.) College on day one of the Assumption College Tip-Off Classic at Laska Gymnasium this evening.

Senior Jack Cole (New Providence, New Jersey/New Providence) led four Stonehill players in double-figures with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field, while converting all four free-throw attempts, to go with eight rebounds, two assists, a blocked shot and steal. Freshman Isaiah Bess (LaGrange, Maine/Hampden Academy) added 13 points off the bench in his collegiate debut, connecting on 6-of-free-throws, while junior Adam Bramanti (Middleton, Massachusetts/Masconomet) contributed 12 points and three rebounds. Junior Carter Smith (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington) registered ten points, three boards and three assists, while sophomore Ryan Logan (Fredericktown, Ohio/Fredericktown) chipped in with a game-high nine rebounds.

Senior Nick Smith (Middletown, New York/Middletown) poured in a game-high 28 points to lead Dominican on 11-of-16 shooting from the field and 6-for-10 from the free-throw line to go with three rebounds and two assists. Sophomore Kristopher Hargraves (Teaneck, New Jersey/Westminster School) added ten points on 4-for-4 shooting from the floor and 2-for-3 at the line with four rebounds and a steal, while senior Robert Hueston (Middletown, New York/Middletown) finished with ten points on 5-of-8 shooting. Junior Jared Fay (Lynn, Massachusetts/Brimmer and May) chipped in with eight points and a team-high eight rebounds.

Freshman Isaiah Bess added 13 points off the bench in his collegiate debut. (PHOTO BY Paul Fitzgerald Photography)

Stonehill shot 41.4-percent (24-for-58) from the field, including 44.4% (12-27) in the second half, converting 19-of-25 (76%) free-throws and posted a 41-29 rebounding advantage that resulted in a 15-4 margin in second chance points. Dominican shot 48.1-percent (26-54) from the field, but just 2-for-16 (12.5%) from three-point range, while converting 13-of-20 (65%) free-throw tries.

Stonehill led by eight at halftime (33-25) and by as much as 15 in the second half before holding on down the stretch for the win. The Skyhawks led by three (33-30) after Smith scored a layup for Dominican 2:08 into the second half. Stonehill responded with a 13-6 run over the next four minutes to open the first double-digit lead of the day (46-36) on a three-pointer from sophomore Jimmy Walsh (Manasquan, New Jersey/Manasquan) 5:41 into the half.

Stonehill took its first 15 point lead (53-38) with 12 minutes remaining after a three-pointer and two free-throws by Bess. A Bess dunk gave the Skyhawks another 15 point margin (55-40) a minute later and then Dominican followed with a 16-2 run to close within a point (57-56) after Smith made one of two at the line with 6:59 to go. The Chargers couldn't get over the hump, missing three chances to draw even or take their first lead since early in the first quarter over the next three minutes before Cole gave Stonehill a two possession lead (64-60) with 3:21 remaining.

Smith pulled Dominican back within two (66-64) with 1:12 left, but the Chargers could get no closer as the Skyhawks drained all six free-throw attempts in the final minute to seal the win.

Stonehill (1-0, 0-0 NE-10) is back in action tomorrow when it closes out the Assumption Tip-Off Classic against Caldwell University at 1 p.m. The Skyhawks home opener is Tuesday, November 25, when they host Franklin Pierce University for a Northeast-10 Conference matchup at 7:30 p.m. Dominican (0-1, 0-0 CACC) faces host Assumption tomorrow at 3 p.m.

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