Jaspers Grind Out Fourth Straight Win at Marist
POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. - The Manhattan men's basketball team grinded out its fourth straight victory on Friday night at Marist (7-12, 2-6 MAAC) in a 61-44 decision before a national audience on ESPN3. Jaspers' sophomore forward Rhamel Brown posted his third double-double of the year finishing with 12 points and 11 rebounds, to go along with four blocks in the triumph. Junior guard George Beamon and sophomore point guard Michael Alvarado matched Brown with a game-high 12 points as Manhattan (13-7, 6-2 MAAC) picked up its 10th win in the last 13 contests.
It took some time, but Manhattan eventually got rolling with less than seven minutes remaining in the first half and the Jaspers never looked back. The Jaspers defensive energy stifled Marist holding the Red Foxes to only one field goal in the final 7:28 of the stanza. While the defense had Marist on lockdown, freshman forward Donovan Kates jump started Manhattan's offense. Kates scored seven straight points over a two minute span to regain a 28-23 lead after hitting his second straight 3-pointer at 4:43.
Manhattan closed the first half with a 12-3 run to take a 33-26 advantage into intermission. Alvarado led Jaspers scoring eight of his points on 3-for-4 shooting in the first half. Ryan McCoy matched his career-high with five points contributing to Manhattan's solid 52.0% (13-25) shooting effort in the first 20 minutes.
The Jaspers picked up where they left off in the second half. Manhattan built its run to 23-6 to go up 44-29 after a 3-pointer from Brutus followed by a free-throw from Beamon at 12:33. Manhattan kept the defensive clamps on Marist and did not yield a field goal until sophomore forward Adam Kemp hit a jumper with 11:39 remaining in the contest. It was a 12 minute 28 second stretch between field goals for the Red Foxes.
Marist clawed to pull within 49-39 with 5:48 remaining on freshman reserve Chavaughn Lewis' free-throw, but the Jaspers responded with the knock out punch. Beamon buried a 3-pointer on the Jaspers next trip down court, and then Brown dominated the lane for the last five minutes scoring six of his points over the final surge. Alvarado gave Manhattan its largest lead of the game with a 3-pointer at 2:08 to put the Jaspers in control 59-41.
The impressive defensive performance featured the Jaspers limiting Marist to only 12.5% (3-24) shooting and nine turnovers in the second half. Marist shot 24.1% (13-54) in the contest as Manhattan also held the Red Foxes leading scorer Devin Price to only two points. Price, a junior guard who entered the game averaging 14.2 points per game, shot 0-11 from the field and 0-for-6 from downtown.
Jaspers' senior forward Roberto Colonette contributed six points, three rebounds and two steals in nine minutes of action. Manhattan also saw the debut of sophomore forward Torgrim Sommerfeldt who has battled injuries since his arrival in Riverdale last year.
Lewis was Marist's top scorer posting 11 points on 3-for-15 shooting off the bench. Sophomore forward Anell Alexis added 10 points and six rebounds for the Red Foxes.
Manhattan looks to ride its momentum into Sunday's home contest with Niagara. The Jaspers and Purple Eagles will be the second half of the doubleheader with the Manhattan women with tip off schedule for 4 p.m. at Draddy Gymnasium.