No. 7 Springfield Uses Strong Second Half to Run Past Keene State, 89-81

No. 7 Springfield Uses Strong Second Half to Run Past Keene State, 89-81

KEENE, N.H. - No. 7 Springfield College scored 53 points after halftime and shot 54% for the game while beating the Keene State College men's basketball team 89-81 on Tuesday night at Spaulding Gymnasium.

Records

  • Keene State:  1-1
  • No. 7 Springfield:  2-0

How It Happened

Ty Nichols made 11-of-21 from the floor and 2-of-4 from long range to score 26 points.  He also added six steals, four rebounds and two assists.  Miguel Prieto tossed in 16 points, seven assists and three rebounds, but he was the only other Owl to score in double-figures.  Sidi Diallo had seven points and four rebounds.  Springfield was led by Heath Post's 23 points and eight rebounds.  Cam Earle had 18 points and five rebounds.

The Owls started the game strong, as they got two buckets from Nichols and one from Paul Mahon while scoring 10 straight points to lead 10-3 nearly five minutes in.  KSC still led 14-7 after Diallo's jumper, but the Pride battled back, tying the game at 18 on an Earle three midway through the first half.  Springfield continued to have the upper hand, as Post and Daryl Costa made threes for a 28-24 advantage at the 6:21 mark.  Post canned another triple with just over two minutes until the break that put the Pride up six (36-30), but Keene State erupted in the final 2:13, scoring the last 12 points of the half to flip the six-point deficit into a six-point lead.  Nichols and DeVon Beasley made shots from long range within 27 seconds of each other in the last minute for a 40-36 lead, and Nichols capped the half by picking Jake Jacobson's pocket and canning a jumper at the other end in the final seconds.  Both teams shot over 50% from the floor in the half.

Springfield's hot shooting carried over into the second half, as they took the lead with 12:20 to go and never trailed again.  KSC did maintain the advantage early on, as Beasley canned a three in the opening minute and a half for a 45-38 Owl lead, which was still 51-44 after Nichols' jumper at the 15:55 mark.  However, KSC scored just one point in the next four minutes and the Pride went on a 10-1 run, going ahead (54-52) on Trey Witter's three-point play at the 12:20 mark.  Diallo tied the game at 54 on the next possession, but Keene State never took the lead again.  Nichols hit a pair of jumpers to slice a five point Springfield edge to one, but Witter made three free throws to make it 64-58 and, later, a three from Earle made it 69-62 with 6:04 to go.  A bucket and free throw from Prieto drew KSC within four (71-67) at the 4:34 mark, but the Pride went on a 9-2 surge over the next three minutes to salt the game away.  Trailing 80-69, the Owls made a last ditch comeback attempt, getting a three from Edwin Ezedonmwen and a Prieto jumper to get within four (82-78) with 39 seconds left, but Springfield made five free throws and got a breakaway basket down the stretch to seal the win.

Inside the Paint

  • Keene State shot 45.8% (33-of-72) from the field, but made just 6-of-21 from three and 9-of-18 at the charity stripe.  Springfield shot at least 54% from all three levels, making 54% (26-of-48) from the field overall, 11-of-20 from distance, and 26-of-34 free throws.
  • The Owls have 35 assists, 20 turnovers and 19 steals in their first two games of the season.
  • KSC has lost back-to-back games against Springfield after winning the previous three.  The Pride advanced to the Final Four last season.
  • Keene State has played three home games against nationally ranked teams in the last two years, falling by six, six and eight points, respectively.

Up Next

  • The Owls are off until next Tuesday, November 20, when they travel to Albertus Magnus College for a 7:00 pm start.
  • Springfield travels to Chicago, Ill. for the Midway Classic this weekend.  They first take on Ohio Wesleyan University on Saturday, November 17 at 5:00 pm E.T.