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Strong Defensive Effort Lifts Men's Basketball to Win at Gordon

Strong Defensive Effort Lifts Men's Basketball to Win at Gordon

WENHAM, Mass. – The Wentworth Institute of Technology men's basketball team used a strong defensive effort to pick up its second straight win as the Leopards fended off Gordon, 55-51, in a Commonwealth Coast Conference contest played at Gordon's Bennett Center. With the win Wentworth picked up its first win at the Bennett Center since December 30, 2010, a 79-47 triumph.

Gordon would take its largest lead of the first half in the fifth minute of the game when Alex Carnes (Phoenix, Ariz.) hit a three from the top of the the key to give Gordon an 11-8 advantage. The score remained that way for the next four minutes until John-Michael Fragnoli (Scotia, N.Y.) scored off a give-and-go from Derek Mayo (Casco, Maine). Nico Donato (Glastonbury, Conn.) gave the Leopards their first lead of the game at the 10:55 mark with an unassisted runner in the lane.

The Fighting Scots (3-6, 1-2) struggled on the offensive end down the stretch of the first half, as the Leopards outscored the hosts 17-13 in the final 10 minutes of the stanza. Wentworth took a 29-24 lead into halftime.

Wentworth (5-5, 2-1) opened the second half scoring five early points – thanks to sophomore Cam Sennick (Wilton, Maine) and freshman Jherson Colon (Boston, Mass.) – and took a 10-point lead at 34-24 with 17 minutes remaining.

Gordon responded with a 16-4 run and took a 40-38 lead on a pair of free throws by Miersma with 8:40 left. Wentworth responded with five straight points as Sennick hit a jumper and junior Ray Bessette (Dedham, Maine) 3-pointer gave the Black & Gold a 43-40 lead with 7:48 left.

After Taylor Bajema (Whitinsville, Mass.) converted a three-point play to tie the game at 43-all, Bessette drained a shot from behind the arc and Mayo made a layup as the shot clock was winding down to push the lead back to five with 4:40 left.

With 2:08 remaining, Donato made a layup to give Wentworth a 52-45 lead. Miersma would hit three of four free throws to make it 52-48 with 53 seconds left, and, with 20 seconds left, Park Thomas (Scottsdale, Ariz.) hit one of two free throws to trim the lead to three. On the ensuing possession, Colon made both free throws to extend the lead to five. Miersma hit a layup to make it a three-point game with 12 ticks left, however Bessette sealed the win by hitting one of two from the line with seven seconds left.

Bessette and Colon both came off the bench to score 12 and 11 points, respectively, with Donato and sophomore Ronnie Turner (Lewiston, Maine) scoring eight apiece. Sennick, Mayo, and Donato each grabbed six rebounds. Wentworth scored 18 points off 14 Gordon turnovers.

Miersma was the only Gordon player to break into double-figure scoring with 13 points. Carnes finished with seven points and nine rebounds to lead Gordon on the glass. The Scots had the slight edge on the boards 34-31.

Both teams hit the road Tuesday night in conference games. Wentworth travels to the University of New England while Gordon is at Western New England.