Men's Basketball Holds Off Le Moyne, 71-65

Senior Pierce Cumpstone posted his fifth double-double of the year with a season-high 23 points and career-best 16 rebounds. (PHOTO BY Lewis Glass/SportsPix)

Cumpstone posts career night with fifth double-double to lead Skyhawks

EASTON, Mass. (January 6, 2016) – Stonehill College, among teams receiving votes in both the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and D2SIDA Division II polls, led by as much as 22 before holding on down the stretch to claim a 71-65 victory over Le Moyne College in Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball action on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium tonight.

Senior forward Pierce Cumpstone (Bainbridge Township, Ohio/Kenston) led Stonehill with his fifth double-double of the season (ninth career) as he scored a season-high 23 points (14 second half) to go with a career-best 16 rebounds, adding two assists, three steals and a blocked shot while shooting 8-for-12 from the field, including 3-for-4 from three-point range, and converted 3-of-4 free-throws for the night.

Junior Ryan Logan (Fredericktown, Ohio/Fredericktown) added 18 points on 7-of-17 shooting, with four rebounds, three assists, two steals and a blocked shot, while senior Daniel Brix (Monroe Township, New Jersey/Saint Joseph) scored a season-high 13 points on 4-of-8 shooting from the floor, while converting all five free-throw attempts, with two steals.

Sophomore Russell Sangster (Rockville, Maryland/Bullis School) led three Le Moyne players in double figures with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the floor and 5-for-6 at the free-throw line to go along with nine rebounds. Senior Connor Mahoney (Hanover, Massachusetts/BC High) scored all 12 of his points off the bench, connecting on 4-of-5 three-pointers, while junior Stan Buczek (Port Jervis, New York/Burke Catholic) added 11 points and five boards.

Senior Daniel Brix scored a season-high 13 points for the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Lewis Glass SportsPix)

Stonehill shot 42.1-percent from the field (24-for-57), including 45.2% (14-31) in the first half to open a 15 point lead (35-20) at the break. The Skyhawks were just 3-for-18 (16.7%) from three-point range, but converted 20-of-27 (74.1%) free-throws and held a 37-33 rebounding edge, while turning the ball over only 12 times. Le Moyne finished shooting 41.1-percent (23-for-56) from the floor, including 47.2% (17-36) in the second half after connecting at just 30% (6-20) in the first. The Dolphins hit nine three-pointers, including seven in the second half to get back in the game.

Stonehill raced out to a ten point lead (17-7) midway through the first half, sparked by a Cumpstone dunk and three-point play from sophomore Isaiah Bess (LaGrange, Maine/Hampden Academy). Le Moyne closed back within five (19-14) after a three-pointer from sophomore Anthony Richards (New Castle, Pennsylvania/New Castle) with eight minutes remaining in the half, but the Skyhawks scored the next ten points, from four different players, to open a 15 point advantage (29-14) with 4:34 to play in the half. The lead stretched to 16 (33-17) with a Logan jumper with 3:19 on the clock before taking a 15 point margin (35-20) into halftime.

Stonehill scored the first seven points of the second half, sparked by a Brix three-point play, to extend its lead to a game-high 22 (42-20) three minutes in. The teams essentially traded baskets for the next six minutes with the Skyhawks still holding a 22 point cushion (56-34) with 11-minutes to go.

Coach Kraus postgame interview

Stonehill's lead was 20 (60-40) after a Cumpstone three-pointer with 8:39 remaining, but Le Moyne wouldn't go down without a fight. The Dolphins went on a 16-2 tear to pull within six (62-56) after a Buczek layup with 3:29 to go. Mahoney buried three three pointers during that stretch, while freshman Eriq Jenkins (Windsor, Ontario/Catholic Central) added a triple as well.

Stonehill went the final 6:55 without a field goal, but did enough at the line down the stretch to hold off Le Moyne, which was able to pull within a possession (68-65) on a three-point play from Richards with 20-seconds remaining. Logan finished the game off for Stonehill from there, making 3-of-4 free-throws in the last 15-seconds to clinch the win.

Stonehill (11-3, 6-2 NE-10), ranked No. 2 in this week's D2SIDA East Regional poll, is back in action on Saturday when it visits Southern Connecticut State University, also receiving votes in the NABC poll and ranked fifth in the regional poll, at 3:30 p.m. The Skyhawks are back at Merkert Gym next Tuesday, January 12, to host the University of New Haven at 7:30 p.m. Le Moyne (5-7, 3-4 NE-10) visits Assumption College on Saturday at 3 p.m.

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