Freshman posts season-highs in points (29) and rebounds (ten)
BIDDEFORD, Maine (January 13, 2018) – Freshman forward Zach Tavitian (Milford, Conn.) posted his first career double-double with 29 points and ten rebounds, but the Western New England University men's basketball team dropped a 102-86 decision to the University of New England on Saturday afternoon in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) action at Harold Alfond Forum.
• Tavitian shot 12-of-18 from the field and 5-of-10 from the free throw line en route to his season-high 29 points. The freshman also established a new season-high with ten boards and added three blocks to go along with one assist and one steal.
• Freshman guard Alex Sikorski (Rocky Hill, Conn.) produced 15 points, six rebounds and three steals in 28 minutes off the bench, while classmate EJ Day (Norwalk, Conn.) added 13 points, four assists and three steals in 23 minutes of reserve duty.
• Junior guard Mikey Pettway (Bridgeport, Conn.) finished with 14 points, eight assists, two rebounds and one steal.
• Freshman guard Alex Kravchuk (Mansfield, Conn.) led the Nor'easters with15 points, four rebounds, four steals and two assists, while senior Ryan Matthews (Park Ridge, N.J.) scored 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field, including 3-of-6 from long distance.
• Senior guard Gavin Dibble (Greenport, N.Y.), sophomore guard Jackson McCoy (East Montpelier, Vt.) and freshman guard Matt Lorman (Rutland, Vt.) also posted double-figure scoring efforts off the bench for UNE.
Leading 52-44 at halftime, the Nor'easters opened the second half with a 9-2 run to claim a 61-46 advantage when Dibble drained a three-pointer at the 17:53 mark. The freshman duo of Tavitian and Sikorski combined to score 11 of the next 13 points for Western New England, as the Golden Bears pulled to within five (64-59) with 15:17 on the clock.
Western New England got as close as three (74-71) after Sikorski made 1-of-2 free throws just over four minutes later, but the visitors were unable to close the gap further. Junior guard Drew Muniz (Gloucester, Mass.) hit a three to make it a six-point game (79-73) with 9:01 to play, and a Matthews triple at the 6:44 mark extended UNE's lead to ten (84-74). The Nor'easters pulled away down the stretch on their way to a 16-point triumph.
Western New England, which faced an early 8-2 deficit, grabbed its first lead of the contest (20-19) on a three-pointer by Day with 11:42 remaining in the first half. The Golden Bears did not trail until UNE junior guard Daron Hoges Jr. (West Orange, N.J.) connected from beyond the arc at the 5:48 mark, sparking an 18-10 run to close out the half as the Nor'easters pulled ahead for good.
• The Golden Bears shot 44.4 percent (32-of-72) overall, but just 23.8 percent (5-of-21) from three-point range. UNE connected at a 41.3 percent (33-of-80) clip from the field and 34 percent (18-of-53) from long range.
• Following his 14-point effort, Pettway is now just 25 points shy of 1,000 for his career.
• The Nor'easters controlled the glass with a 54-38 rebounding advantage.
Western New England (6-7, 3-4 CCC) will look to bounce back on Tuesday, when the Golden Bears open a three-game homestand against Wentworth at 5:30 p.m. UNE (5-9, 3-4 CCC) travels to Curry on Tuesday for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff.