BABSON PARK, Mass. – Sophomore John Wickey (Manchester, N.H.) led all players with 27 points and 12 rebounds in leading the host Babson College Beavers to a 74-62 victory over Salve Regina University in the semifinal round of the 2012 Babson Invitational Men's Basketball Tournament at Staake Gymnasium on Saturday night.
With the win, Babson (1-0) advances to Sunday's Championship Game at 4 p.m., while the Seahawks (1-1) will play in the Consolation Game at 2 p.m.
Wickey's game-high 27 points came on 9-of-11 shooting from the floor and a 6-of-7 clip from the foul line. First-year Travis Sheldon (Woodstock, N.Y.) added 15 points while hitting 5-of-10 from the field in his first collegiate contest, and sophomore David Mack (Holden, Mass.) added 13 points on 6-of-11 shooting. Junior transfer Kenny Ross (Furlong, Pa.) scored nine points and dished out a game-high eight assists in his Babson debut, and sophomore Ryan Stowe (Shrewsbury, Mass.) chipped in with four points and five rebounds.
Salve Regina was led by junior Isiah Pringle (Queens, N.Y.), who hit 4-of-7 from three-point range on his way to a 16-point, three-steal performance. Senior William Smiley (Saunderstown, R.I.) and junior Joshua Hohlfelder (Noank, Conn.) each added 14 points for the Seahawks, with Smiley also chipping in team-highs of nine rebounds and four assists.
Down three just over five minutes into the contest, Babson erupted for a 10-0 run that turned a 9-6 deficit into a 16-9 lead that the Beavers would not relinquish the rest of the night. Wickey capped the run with back-to-back three-pointers, and his third trifecta later in the period gave the hosts a 24-13 advantage. The Beavers eventually led by as many as 17 late in the frame before taking a 41-26 advantage into the break.
Babson appeared to be on its way to an easy blowout win after a conventional three-point play by Mack pushed its lead to 20 at 48:28 with 18:33 left in the second stanza, but Salve Regina came storming back to get within four with two minutes to go. Back-to-back threes by first-year Doug Henton (Gales ferry, Conn.) fueled a 9-0 run that trimmed the Beavers' lead to single digits at 52-43 with 11:47 to go, and after Babson went back up by 13, Pringle hit a pair of triples during an 8-0 burst that cut it to just five, 58-53, with 4:25 on the clock.
Later in the period, Hohlfelder sank two free throws that made it a four-point game, 63-59, with 2:02 remaining, but that would be as close as the Seahawks would get the rest of the way. Sheldon hit a slashing pull-up jumper in the lane to give Babson some breathing room with 1:47 to go, and a lay-up by junior Matt Palazini (Franklin, Mass.) coupled with a free throw by Wickey make it 68-59 with 42 seconds left. Another three-pointer by Pringle cut it back to six moments later, but Babson finished the game with six straight points from the foul line to clinch the 74-62 victory.
2012 Babson Invitational Tournament – Semifinal #2
Colby Advances To BIT Finals With 74-61 Win Over Wentworth
BABSON PARK, Mass. – Colby College shot 54.2 percent in the second half to pull away the Wentworth Institute of Technology on Saturday night, as the Mules picked up a 74-61 victory over the Leopards in the semifinal round of the 2012 Babson Invitational Men's Basketball Tournament at Staake Gymnasium.
With the win, Colby (1-0) will play host Babson in Sunday's championship game at 4 p.m., while Wentworth (0-1) will take on Salve Regina University in the consolation game at 2 p.m.
Colby was led by the first-year duo of John Gallego (Old Bethpage, N.Y.) and Chris Hudnut (Chevy Chase, Md.), who each scored 12 points in their first collegiate contest. First-year Luke Westman (Newton, Mass.) also enjoyed a solid debut, scoring 10 points to go with five rebounds, and sophomore Danny Chase (Weston, Conn.) and Connor O'Neil (Freeport, Maine) added nine and eight points, respectively.
Wentworth received a game-high 18 points and eight rebounds from senior Corey Therriault (Auburn, Maine), as well as 16 points, nine rebounds, and three assists from junior Derek Mayo (Casco, Maine). The Leopards shot just 32.8 percent from the floor (20-for-61) and 58.6 percent from the free throw line (17-for-29), while Colby shot 50.0 percent from the field (24-for-48) and 75.9 percent from the stripe (22-for-29).
Wentworth led for the majority of the first half, building a 21-12 cushion after a Therriault lay-up with 6:41 to play in the period. The lead was still nine after two free throws from Mayo made it 24-15 with 4:43 on the clock, but the Mules rallied with 17-6 run over the remainder of the session. After a Therriault three-pointer gave Wentworth a 27-19 advantage, Gallego sparked a 9-0 burst with a conventional three-point play that cut it to five, and Westman followed with six straight points to five the Mules their first lead of the contest, 28-27, with 2:09 left. Therriault then drained another trifecta to put his team back in front by two, but a Ryan Jann (Westford, Mass.) lay-in and two freebies by sophomore Jack Crampton (Madison, Conn.) gave Colby a 32-30 edge heading into the break.
The two teams exchanged leads early in the second half, with the Mules eventually moving ahead to stay when sophomore Shane Rogers (Mount Kisco, N.Y.) netted four straight points to give his team a 48-44 advantage. It was still just a two-point game at 52-50 with nine minutes remaining, but Gallego buried a three to spark a 12-4 run that would essentially put the game away. Chase scored the final seven points of the outburst, including a lay-up that gave the Mules a 64-54 lead with 4:35 to go.
Wentworth would cut it back to single digits twice down the stretch, but Colby sank eight of its final 12 free throws to extend its lead to 15 at 74-59 with under a minute remaining. Therriault then hit a pair of foul shots for the Leopards that accounted for the 74-61 final.