KEENE, N.H. - Ty Nichols and James Anozie combined to make 15-of-26 from the field while scoring 46 points as the Keene State College men's basketball team opened Little East Conference play with a 92-77 victory over UMass Boston on Wednesday night at Spaulding Gymnasium.
- Keene State: 3-2, 1-0 LEC
- UMass Boston: 4-1, 0-1 LEC
How It Happened
Nichols scored 25 points on the evening, 23 of which came after halftime, while adding six rebounds, six assists and two steals. Anozie had 21 points and 10 rebounds for his second double-double in the last three games. Miguel Prieto had 10 points and seven assists, while Edwin Ezedonmwen tossed in 10 points off the bench. Michael Boyd had 24 points for UMass Boston, and Kevin Nunez had 13 points and 12 rebounds.
The Owls got off to a flying start, as they held the Beacons scoreless for the first 5:51 while building a 10-0 advantage. A Prieto three-point play and buckets from Anozie and DeVon Beasley highlighted the surge. Javaris Hill snapped UMB's drought and the KSC run, but the Owls later got another inside bucket from Anozie for a 17-4 lead at the 11:48 mark. A Jordan Haywood layup a minute later gave Keene State their largest lead of the half (21-7). The Owls mostly maintained a double-digit lead for the next several minutes, as back-to-back hoops from Anozie made it 33-20 with 5:24 to go in the half. UMass Boston quickly got back in the game, though, as an 11-0 burst in just over two minutes made it a two-point game (33-31). Ezedonmwen's three on the next possession halted the visitors' momentum, and KSC took a 41-36 lead into the break.
Back-to-back threes from Prieto and Beasley in the opening minutes of the second stanza helped KSC reestablish breathing room with a 47-38 lead, and they held off every Beacon threat after that. Anozie's inside bucket at 17:20 put the Owls back up double-digits. UMB got within seven four different times over the next several minutes, but never any closer, and a Nichols trey with just under 12 minutes to go provided KSC a 67-54 cushion. Nichols was all over the court after that, as he canned another triple and a jumper for a 72-58 lead at the 8:50 mark. His three-point play a little over a minute later put KSC up 14 and capped off a span where he scored 11 straight Owl points. The Beacons were able to slice their deficit to nine two different times, the last of which came at 78-69 with 4:32 left, but never got any closer, as an 8-3 KSC run over the next two minutes finished with jumpers from Nichols and Paul Mahon made it 86-72. The Owls cruised from there.
Inside the Paint
- The Owls assisted on 24 of their 31 made field goals and never trailed in the contest, shooting 51.7% (31-of-60) from the floor.
- KSC has had four double-figure scorers in three of the five games so far this season.
- UMass Boston had a 46-35 rebounding advantage, including 26-11 on the offensive glass.
- Keene State has won seven straight overall against the Beacons, and the last 11 at home. The Owls lead the all-time series 40-11.
- KSC takes on their third nationally-ranked opponent on Saturday, December 1, as they visit No. 12 Middlebury College for a 3:00 pm start.
- UMass Boston travels to conference foe Eastern Connecticut State University on the same day and time.