Lasell Drops GNAC Matchup to Suffolk University in Men's Hoops
Newton, Mass - The Lasell College men's basketball team hosted GNAC rival Suffolk University Thursday night. The Lasers opened the game well, riding 54% shooting in the opening stanza to a 44-34 halftime lead. The Rams responded by turning up their defensive effort, and holding Lasell to 28% shooting in the second half while shooting 60% from the field. The cold shooting proved too much for the Lasers to overcome, as Suffolk picked up the GNAC victory 92-76.
The Lasers placed four players in double figures, led by Javon Williams(Mattapan, MA) with 21 points and nine rebounds and Sherrod Wade(College Park, GA) who added 20 points and 9 rebounds. Sean Bertanza(Seymour, CT) chipped in with 16 points and Brandon Ganesh(Wellington, FL) tallied 11 points off the bench.
Forwards Matt Pedjonovic(Quincy, MA) and Colin Halpin(Melrose, MA) both produced double-double efforts for Suffolk, with Pedjonovic posting game highs of 31 points and 18 rebounds and Halpin adding 29 points and 11 boards. Chris Torres(Brockton, MA) was the only other Ram player to reach double figures scoring 18 points.
Lasell jumped out to an early 9-2 lead on a Sean Bertanza jumper followed by a Sherrod Wade trey. Suffolk quickly responded with a 9-2 run of their own evening the score at 11 apiece at 14:50 mark. With 12:40 remaining in the opening half and the score tied at 15-15, Lasell used an 8-2 run opening up a six point cushion. The Lasell lead fluctuated throughout the remainder of the first half, with the Lasers holding a ten point lead at halftime 44-34 courtesy of a buzzer beating layup from Wade.
Lasell held the Rams to a 45.5 shooting percent in the first half only allowing two players to score points. Colin Halpin and Pepdjonovic contributed 19 and 15 respectively. Wade and Williams led the Lasers with 12 points and Bertanza added eight. Podjonovic and Halpin combined to shoot 15-24 from the field in the opening half, and the duo accounted for all 34 points scored by the Rams in the period.
After the half, both teams exchanged baskets throughout the first five minutes, with the Rams slowly closing in on the Lasers' lead. At the 13:32 mark, the visitors closed the gap to 55-52, the smallest margin thus far after Chris Torres made a layup. The guests took their first lead of the game at 10:49 when Halpin made a layup for a 60-59 advantage. The two teams traded baskets over the next couple of minutes, when Suffolk took the lead for good with 7:55 remaining after Raphy Merando (Salem, MA) knocked down a three pointer. Lasell narrowed the visitors lead to five at 77-72 on a Bertanza jumper, but they were unable to continue the momentum, falling 92-76.
The win improved Suffolk to 5-6 in the GNAC, 8-10 overall, while Lasell fell to 6-5 in the GNAC and 7-11 overall with the loss.
Suffolk will travel to Standish, Maine to take on the Monks of St. Joseph's College on Saturday January 28th, and Lasell will head to Paxton, MA for a 3:00 pm GNAC contest versus Anna Maria College.