Golden Bears Secure 92-83 Victory over Westfield State with Strong Second Half Effort

Sophomore Mike McGuire scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half of Western New England's 92-83 victory over Westfield State on Saturday (photo by Rachael Margossian).
Sophomore Mike McGuire scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half of Western New England's 92-83 victory over Westfield State on Saturday (photo by Rachael Margossian).

Five players score in double figures for second straight game

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (December 9, 2017) –
Another strong second half shooting performance sparked the Western New England University men's basketball team to a 92-83 victory over Westfield State University on Saturday afternoon in non-conference action at the Alumni Healthful Living Center. 

Top Performers
• Junior guard Mikey Pettway (Bridgeport, Conn.) led five Golden Bears in double figures with a team-high 20 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field and 4-of-6 from the free throw line to go with eight assists and seven rebounds.
• Sophomore guard Mike McGuire (Garden City, N.Y.) finished with 14 points, four assists and three rebounds, while classmate Cole Eiber (Albertson, N.Y.) contributed 12 points, six boards and two assists.
• Freshmen Alex Sikorski (Rocky Hill, Conn.) and EJ Day (Norwalk, Conn.) both made significant contributions off the bench, as Sikorski recorded ten points, six rebounds and five assists, and Day added 14 points.

• Westfield State junior forward Marcus Collins (Cambridge, Mass.) paced the Owls with a game-high 22 points, seven rebounds and two blocks.
• Freshman guard Ty Sands (Waterbury, Conn.) totaled 12 points, six boards, four assists and two steals, while classmate Tray Rumley (Meriden, Conn.) produced 15 points and seven rebounds off the bench.

Game Review
• The Golden Bears made three of their first five three-point attempts, including two from Eiber, and led 16-11 at the 13:37 mark of the first half. A triple from Day with 9:10 remaining gave Western New England its largest advantage of the half at 24-16.
• Westfield State answered 15 seconds later with a trey by junior Jay Trueheart (Waterbury, Conn.), which sparked a 13-4 run as the Owls pulled back ahead 29-28 with just under five minutes on the clock.
• The lead changed hands six times over the remainder of the half, with Westfield State holding a 41-40 edge at the break.
• The two teams traded baskets early in the second half, before Western New England took the lead for good (50-47) on a three-pointer by McGuire at the 15:47 mark. The sophomore connected from beyond the arc again 29 seconds later, while sophomore Mayo Aina (Providence, R.I.) and Sikorski added treys at 13:42 and 13:06, respectively, to give the Golden Bears their largest lead of the afternoon at 61-48.
• The Owls got as close as five (82-77) on a three-pointer by Sands with 2:15 left in the contest, but Western New England answered with six straight points to push their lead back into double figures, and McGuire sealed the contest with four free throws down the stretch.

Notes
• For the second straight game, the Golden Bears erupted offensively in the second half. Western New England shot 58.6 percent from the field (17-of-29) and 54.5 percent from beyond the arc (6-of-11) over the final 20 minutes of regulation.  
• The Golden Bears won the rebounding battle 40-37.
• With the win, Western New England has secured its first three-game winning streak since the 2014-15 season. 

Up Next
Western New England (4-5) will be off for the next three and a half weeks, before opening its second semester schedule at home against Gordon College on Thursday, January 4. Westfield State (5-5) returns home to host Pine Manor tomorrow afternoon.