Men's Basketball Holds Off Late USM Rally in Sunday Night Win

Jack Simonds had 19 points, ten rebounds and six assists in the win over USM.
Jack Simonds had 19 points, ten rebounds and six assists in the win over USM.

BRUNSWICK, Maine – The Bowdoin College men's basketball team held off a furious late rally to defeat the University of Southern Maine on Sunday evening at Morrell Gymnasium, 84-81.

The Polar Bears (6-3), who led by 17 with 6:16 to go, win their fourth consecutive game to finish the first semester. The Huskies (3-6) lose their third-straight contest to enter break.

Game Highlights

  • The teams traded blows in a back-and-forth opening half. Jayvon Pitts-Young's 11 points led USM to a late lead in the period, but a buzzer-beating lay-in by Bowdoin's Taiga Kagitomi evened the score at 32-32 at the break.
  • A Jack Simonds three-pointer sparked an 18-4 Bowdoin run to start the second period as the Polar Bears seemingly put the game away, holding a 50-36 lead midway through the frame.
  • Bowdoin posted its largest lead of the contest, 69-52, following a Stephen Ferraro floater with 6:16 on the clock.
  • The Huskies caught fire from the field and took advantage of several Bowdoin miscues to close the gap in the final moments. USM hit seven three-pointers in the final six minutes, not including three free throws on a foul from beyond the arc.
  • Jayvon Pitts-Young's 30th point of the night on a three-pointer with nine seconds left trimmed Bowdoin's lead to 83-78 and after a Bowdoin turnover on the ensuing inbounds pass, Christian McCue netted a three-pointer from the wing with seven seconds on the clock to cut the lead to 83-81.
  • Improbably, an offensive foul on the next Bowdoin inbounds put USM on the line with a chance to tie with three seconds left, but McCue missed the front end of a one-and-one opportunity and Hugh O'Neil seized the rebound.
  • O'Neil connected on 1-of-2 from the line and a desperation heave by McCue at the buzzer sailed wide as Bowdoin clung to the three-point win.

By The Numbers

  • All five Bowdoin starters saw double figures, led by 19 points, ten rebounds and six assists from Jack Simonds.
  • Zavier Rucker had 11 points and nine assists for Bowdoin. Hugh O'Neil (16), David Reynolds (15) and Stephen Ferraro (10) all saw double digits for the Polar Bears.
  • Jayvon Pitts-Young was outstanding for USM, connecting on 12-18 from the field to end with a game-high 30 points in the loss. Christian McCue had 18 points for the Huskies.
  • Bowdoin shot 54% from the field for the game, but went 6-19 from three-point range. USM countered with 12-28 shooting from long distance and ended at 51% for the contest.
  • The Polar Bears built their big second-half lead thanks to inside dominance as they owned a 41-23 edge in rebounding.

Up Next

  • Bowdoin will return to action on Sunday, December 30 at Brandeis (2:00 p.m.)
  • Southern Maine will play in the Trinity Holiday Invitational on December 30-31, opening against Western New England at 7:00 p.m. on December 30.