MBB: Lasell hands Emmanuel first GNAC loss of the season

MBB: Lasell hands Emmanuel first GNAC loss of the season

NEWTON, Mass. – Sophomore Dylan Murray (Williston, Fla.) poured in a career-high 30 points Thursday evening to lead Lasell College to an 89-71 victory over Emmanuel College at the Lasell Athletic Center, handing the Saints their first Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) loss of the season.

Lasell stopped a four-game losing streak to improve to 3-3 in the GNAC (5-14 overall), while Emmanuel drops to 5-1 in the conference (14-5 overall).

Murray connected on 10-of-19 shots from the field, including 9-of-16 from three-point range, finishing one shy of the school record for threes in a game, along with seven rebounds. He made four of his shots from beyond the arc in a four-minute stretch early in the second half as Lasell drained eight threes and a two to start the half, turning a two-point halftime margin (36-34) into a 17-point bulge (62-45) with 13:35 to play.

Sophomore Kevin Nunez (Dorchester, Mass.) added 20 points for the Lasers on 9-of-15 shooting, while junior Stefan Masciarelli (Northbridge, Mass.) contributed 16 points and matched his season-high with eight assists. Sophomore Tommy Beauchemin (Lincoln, R.I.) added nine points and a team-high eight rebounds in the victory.

The Saints had a balanced attack with five players scoring in double figures. Senior Joe Tamburro (South Windsor, Conn.) led the way with 15 points, followed by sophomore Marcus Fox (Danbury, Conn.) with 14, junior Emmett Riddick (Middletown, Conn.) with 13, freshman Anthony Davidson (Annapolis, Md.) with 12, and senior Isaiah Ruffen (Haverhill, Mass.) with 10.

Murray's first three of the game gave Lasell an early 10-5 lead, and a traditional three-point play by Murray pushed the Laser lead to 16-7. Emmanuel battled back to tie the game at 18-all at the midway point of the half after a pair of free throws by Tamburro but Murray answered with a pair of long-range shots to push the Lasell margin back up to six points. Lasell had its largest lead in the first half (31-22) after another Murray trifecta with six minutes remaining, but the Saints battle back again, slicing the margin to a pair (36-34) at the break.

Lasell's 26-11 rally in the first six-and-a-half minutes of the second half proved to be the difference. Emmanuel closed the gap to 14 points a couple of times, and got the margin down to 11 points (69-58) with 7:35 on the clock, but Nunez and Masciarelli made back-to-back hoops for Lasell to stop the comeback attempt. The Saints got as close as 11 with 3:40 remaining but Masciarelli drained a three and the Lasers maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the way.

The Lasers converted a season-high 18-of-37 three-pointers in the game, matching their season-best 48.6 percent. Emmanuel was good on just 4-of-20 from beyond the arc (20.0 percent).

Both teams continue GNAC play on Saturday, Lasell visiting Johnson & Wales University for a 1:00 p.m. contest and Emmanuel returning home to host Saint Joseph's College (Maine)  in a 1:00 p.m. tip-off.

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