Defense Leads Southern N.H. Past Stonehill, 58-41

Sophomore Ryan Logan scored a team-high nine points for the Skyhawks today. (PHOTO BY Lewis Glass/SportsPix)

Penmen hold Skyhawks to season-low 41 points as Sanders nets 19 

EASTON, Mass. (February 14, 2015) – Southern New Hampshire University, ranked fourth in this week's D2SIDA East Regional poll, held tenth-ranked Stonehill College to its lowest scoring output in nearly 12 years with a 58-41 victory in Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball action on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium this afternoon.

Southern New Hampshire limited Stonehill to just 27.1-percent shooting from the field (16-for-59), including 7-for-27 (25.9%) in the first half as the Penmen staked out a 15 point (32-17) halftime lead, and the Skyhawks connected on just 5-of-29 (17.2%) three-pointers and converted 4-of-7 (57.1%) free-throws in posting its lowest point total since a 56-37 setback at American International College on February 25, 2003. SNHU finished shooting 43.3% (19-44) from the floor, including 54.2% (13-24) in the first half, connecting on 8-of-18 (44.4%) from beyond the arc, and converting 12-of-17 (70.6%) free-throws.

Junior Rodney Sanders (Linden, New Jersey/Linden) led Southern New Hampshire with a game-high 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field, including 3-for-4 from three-point range, to go with four rebounds, five assists and two steals. Senior Elijah Bonsignore (Felton, Delaware/Kingsway) added 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and a blocked shot, while sophomore Devin Gilligan (Amherst, New Hampshire/Kimball Union) chipped in nine points on 2-of-4 shooting, converting 5-of-6 free-throws, with two rebounds, and two steals in 20 minutes off the bench for the Penmen.

No Stonehill players reached double figures with sophomore Ryan Logan (Fredericktown, Ohio/Fredericktown) leading the way with nine points and five rebounds. Freshman Isaiah Bess (LaGrange, Maine/Hampden Academy) contributed eight points, connecting on 2-of-5 three-pointers, in 18 minutes off the bench, while sophomore Jimmy Walsh (Manasquan, New Jersey/Manasquan) grabbed a team-high seven boards (five offensive).

Freshman Isaiah Bess provided a spark off the bench for the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Paul W. Fitzgerald Photography)

Senior Jack Cole (New Providence, New Jersey/New Providence) scored the opening basket for Stonehill before Southern New Hampshire rattled off a 22-4 run to open a 16 point lead (22-6) after a Gilligan layup nine minutes into the game. Junior BJ Cardarelli (Manchester, Connecticut/East Catholic) buried back to back three-pointers during that stretch, while Sanders netted seven points for the Penmen. Junior Carter Smith (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington) answered with a three-pointer for Stonehill, but SNHU extended its lead to 19 (30-11) with a Sanders triple with 5:26 remaining in the half.

Bess canned a three-pointer to pull Stonehill within 15 at the break (32-17) and then the Skyhawks were able to climb back within eight (35-27) after a Bess dunk with 13:16 remaining in the contest. Smith connected from beyond the arc to draw the Skyhawks within seven (40-33) with nine minutes to go, but Southern New Hampshire scored eight straight points to reclaim a 15 point lead (48-33) with two free-throws by senior Phillip Tripodakis (Athens, Greece) with five minutes on the clock.

Logan followed with a layup and then Bess added another triple to cut the Stonehill deficit to ten (48-38) with 3:55 to go. That was as close as the Skyhawks would get, with Sanders answering with a three-pointer at the other end and the Penmen converted 5-of-6 free-throws in the last 1:19 to seal the victory and snap Stonehill's eight game home winning streak.

Stonehill (16-8, 11-7 NE-10) returns to action on Wednesday when it visits Franklin Pierce University for a key NE-10 clash at 7:30 p.m. The Skyhawks return home next Saturday, February 21, to host rival Bentley University on Senior Night at 7 p.m. Please note the time change on that contest. Southern New Hampshire (16-6, 14-4 NE-10) hosts Saint Thomas Aquinas College on Monday at 3 p.m.

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Game Highlights