NEW LONDON, Conn. - The Bowdoin College men's basketball team closed out its regular season with a come-from-behind win at Connecticut College on Saturday, 60-56.
The victory earns the Polar Bears (14-9, 5-5 NESCAC) the fifth seed in the upcoming NESCAC Tournament and the right to travel to fourth-seeded Tufts for a NESCAC Quarterfinal game next Saturday, February 16. More tournament details will be announced on Monday. With one game remaining in their league schedule, the Camels fall to 7-15 (0-9 NESCAC).
Maximilian Staiger had his second consecutive outstanding game, posting 18 points, including 8-9 from the free-throw stripe, to lead the Polar Bears. Andrew Madlinger also saw double-figures with 12 points while Lucas Hausman pitched in nine key points off the bench. Connecticut College's Matt Vadas led all players with 20 points.
The Camels used a late 13-2 run in the opening period to take a ten-point lead, 25-15, with under four minutes remaining in the stanza. Vadas hit a pair from the stripe with 35 seconds left in the period to give the hosts a 32-24 edge at the break. Connecticut College shot 35% from the field in the opening half but nailed five three-pointers, including three from Vadas, while holding the Polar Bears to just 28% from the field.
Connecticut College maintained a seven-point lead, 45-38, midway through the second half when Bowdoin mounted their run. The Polar Bears rolled off an 11-0 surge, sparked by Nick Lenker's three-point play that gave the visitors their first lead since the opening moments. A pair of Bryan Hurley free throws gave Bowdoin a 49-45 lead with 5:56 to go.
The Camels were able to rally and tie the score at 54-54 on Vadas' fourth three-pointer of the game with 3:34 to play. But the Polar Bears would never relinquish the lead and scored the next six points, including a running jumper from Hurley as the shot clock was expiring with 1:28 to go that gave Bowdoin a 58-54 cushion.
Bowdoin shot 52% from the field in the second half to finish at 40% for the game. The Camels held a 39-32 edge in rebounds but committed 14 turnovers to 10 for the Polar Bears.