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Strong Second Half Lifts Men's Basketball Past Eastern Nazarene

Strong Second Half Lifts Men's Basketball Past Eastern Nazarene

BOSTON, Mass. – Led by sophomore Jason Ganley's (Northbridge, Mass.) 22 points, four players scored in double figures as the Wentworth Institute of Technology men's basketball team used a strong second half to roll past Eastern Nazarene, 80-58, in a Commonwealth Coast Conference contest played at Tansey Gymnasium.

Winners of two straight the Leopards improve to 6-6 overall and 4-1 in CCC play while the Lions dropped their third straight contest to stand at 9-3 (3-2).

The teams went back and forth in the opening portion of the contest with Eastern Nazarene taking a 10-7 lead on a senior Eric Lynch (Alpharetta, Ga.) layup. Wentworth answered with a three pointer form Ganley and a basket from senior Kyle Romich (Groton, Mass.) to take a 12-10 lead. A senior Justin Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) trifecta and three-point play from junior Christian Lynch (Alpharetta, Ga.) gave the visitors a 16-12 lead with 13:13 left.

Junior Dan DeVaux (Wethersfield, Conn.) and Romich scored on the Leopards' next two possessions to even the score at 16-all and the teams would trade baskets until Eric Lynch gave the visitors a 23-20 lead with 7:57 remaining. Lynch would extend the lead to four with 6:06 left before two free throws from sophomore Ben Kizel (Short Hills, N.J.) and a DeVaux jumper knotted the score at 26-all. Those four points started a 10-0 run – capped off by two Kizel free throws – to give the hosts a 32-26 lead with 1:47 left and Wentworth led 34-29 at the break.

After Ganley opened the second half with a basket, a three pointer from senior Jaylen Owens (Johns Creek, Ga.) cut the lead to four. Wentworth responded with a 10-0 run which was capped off by a sophomore Cesar Fulcar (Watertown, Mass.) three pointer. Eastern Nazarene scored the next six points to cut the lead to single digits for the final time as the Leopards used a 13-2 run to take a 19-point lead with 9:39 left.

The Lions would only manage to get as close as 14 while the Leopards' lead would swell to as many as 27 with 2:20 remaining in the contest. The Leopards shot 58.6 percent from the floor in the second half, which included 58.3 percent from behind the arc, and held the Lions to 36.1 percent.

Ganley was 8-for-10 from the floor and 4-for-4 from the line for his 22 points and also dished out four assists. Romich scored 17 points, grabbed 10 rebounds, and had four assists, DeVaux recorded a career-high 16 points on 6-for-8 shooting (4-for-5 from the behind the arc), and Kizel had 11 points, five rebounds, and five assists. Wentworth shot just under 50 percent from the floor for the game and had a 43-30 rebounding advantage.

The Leopards are at Roger Williams on Saturday while Eastern Nazarene hosts Nichols, also on Saturday.