Men's Basketball Falls to Eastern Connecticut, 78-59

Men's Basketball Falls to Eastern Connecticut, 78-59

NORTH DARTMOUTH–Visiting Eastern Connecticut State outscored the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's men's basketball team in the second half, 47-30, and pulled away for a 78-59 victory in the second game of a Little East Conference doubleheader at the Tripp Athletic Center Monday evening.

The Warriors, who led at halftime, 31-29, used an 18-5 run early in the second half to seize a 55-43 advantage. Eastern Connecticut continued to increase their lead, building a 25 point advantage, 74-49, with 4:56 remaining.

The Corsairs overcame a 12 point lead in the first half, outscoring the Warriors, 16-4 in the latter part of the first half and tying the game at 29-29 with 58 seconds remaining  on a pair of free throws and a subsequent three-pointer by sophomore guard Jake Laga (Northampton, MA/Northampton HS).

Sophomore guard Mike Rotando (Point Pleasant Beach, NJ/Point Pleasant Beach HS/Bloomfield) led UMass Dartmouth with 17 points, making six of eight shots from the field and all three of his three-point attempts. Freshman center Wale Abraham (Lynn, MA/Lynn Classical HS) added 12 points and nine rebounds, while Laga contributed 10 points.

Five Warriors scored in double figures. Junior forward Mike Garrow (Terryyille, CT/Terryville HS) led the way with 19 points, senior forward Chris Robitaille (Canton, CT/Canton HS) had 15, freshman guard Trachone Preston (Enfield, CT/Enfield HS) had 14, senior forward Tyler Hundley (Cheshire, CT/Cheshire HS) had 12, and junior guard Brian Salzillo (North Haven, CT/North haven HS) added 10.

"I thought we played hard in the first half, and to start the second half," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Brian Baptiste. "We can't make the kind of mistakes we made down the stretch and expect to win."

The Corsairs dropped to 4-19 and 1-11 in the Little East Conference with the defeat, while the Warriors improved to 16-7 and 10-2 in LEC play with the victory. UMass Dartmouth will return to action when they host UMass Boston Wednesday in the second game of a Little East Conference doubleheader. Eastern Connecticut will host Keene State Wednesday.