DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Paced by junior Arinze Obiora's (Lagos, Nigera) 30 points, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth men's basketball team overcame the early deficit to hold-off the visiting Castleton Spartans in a 103-95 battle in the championship round of the 2017 Hampton Inn Tournament at the Tripp Athletic Center.
Score: UMass Dartmouth 103, Castleton 95
Records: UMass Dartmouth 2-0, 0-0 LEC | Castleton 1-2, 0-0 NAC
How it Happened
Castleton opened strong as its full-court press gave the Corsairs' fits. The Spartans scored the first seven points of the game and held the host without a bucket until 16:40 in the half.
Midway through the half, the Corsairs began to break through the defensive pressure and got to work on a 30-15 deficit. With 10 minutes left, UMass Dartmouth dropped 15 unanswered points, the longest streak of the game, tying it up at 35 apiece.
The Corsairs snatched their first lead of the game with 5:08 left in the half when freshman Jake Ashworth (Fairhaven, Mass.) buried one from beyond the arc. The teams traded blows for the remaining time in the half and headed into the locker room with the hosts leading 48-45.
In the first five minutes of the second half, the back-and-forth continued with UMass Dartmouth controlling a 15-14 run as Ashworth contributed seven points for his team during the span to sustain the lead (61-59).
With 13:44 left, the Spartans locked it up at 63 apiece, but UMass Dartmouth quickly re-upped the led as eight unanswered points gave them a 71-63 advantage.
The teams combined for 64 points in the final ten minutes of the game with UMass Dartmouth receiving 11 from free throws and nine from three-pointers. The Spartans cut the gap down to five in the final minute, but were unable to make the complete comeback.
Inside the Numbers
- UMass Dartmouth finished the game 35-of-64 (37.5%) from the field and 6-of-16 from beyond the arc while Castleton were 33-of-67 (49.3%) and 13-of-33 (39.4%) in those respective fields.
- Obiora tallied a career-high 30 points on 12-of-18 shooting and 13 rebounds, earning Tournament MVP honors. Ashworth notched a new career-high in points with 21 while knocking down 4-of-5 from long distance.
- Junior Atakan Akcam (Ankara, Turkey), senior Joshua Imadiyi (Lynn, Mass.), and sophomore Cody Borges (Dartmouth, Mass.) all finished in double-digits, with Imadiyi earning the Corsairs' second spot on the All-Tournament team.
- The Corsairs knocked down free throws at a 27-of-31 clip while the Spartans registered 16-of-24 from the foul line.
- UMass Dartmouth dominated the glass 42-29 while edging the visitor in the assists category 17-15.
The Corsairs welcomes Brandeis University to the Tripp Athletic Center on Nov. 21 for a 7:00 p.m. start. Castleton continues its road-trip on the same day when it goes against Plymouth State at 7:30 p.m.