#7 Men's Basketball Overcomes Second Half Deficit to Down SNHU 83-73

#7 Men's Basketball Overcomes Second Half Deficit to Down SNHU 83-73

Georgios Papapetrou notches 13 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists

RINDGE, N.H. (November 28, 2012) -- The No. 7 nationally ranked Franklin Pierce University men's basketball team overcame a second half deficit on Wednesday night to pick up an important 83-73 win over Southern New Hampshire at The Fieldhouse in Rindge. The Ravens improved to 5-0 overall and 3-0 in the Northeast-10, while the Penmen dipped to 3-2 and 1-2 in league play.

The win also enabled the Ravens to begin a season 5-0 for the first time in 20 years, as the 1992-93 squad began its campaign with seven-consecutive victories on the way to a 22-8 record and a berth in the NCAA Division II Tournament.

Four Ravens scored in double-figures, led by junior forward Ellis Cooper's (Northampton, Mass.) 18 points on 6-of-12 shooting from the field. Junior frontcourt-mate Adrianos Vourliotakis Perdikaris (Cholargos, Athens) followed with 14 points, while sophomore Ryen Vilmont (Philadelphia, Pa.) netted 10.

Cooper, Vourliotakis and junior guard Georgios Papapetrou (Athens, Greece) each collected seven rebounds, while Papapetrou dished out a game-high five assists. Papapetrou added a career-high 13 points.

C.J. Marriro pumped in a team-best 14 points for SNHU, while Elijah Bonsignore added 12 points and seven boards.

Franklin Pierce held a double-digit lead early in the game, but SNHU slowly chipped away at the deficit over the later stages of the first half and the early minutes of the second half to eventually take a 62-58 lead with 9:12 remaining. Phillip Tripodakis scored five-straight points on a three-pointer and layup to put the Penmen on top by four.

Franklin Pierce, though, didn't flinch and showed character in coming back from the deficit. Papapetrou pumped in a three-pointer at the other end of the court to pull the Ravens to within one and Vourliotakis converted a pair of free throws to put the Ravens on top by one.
The Ravens weren't done after those two possessions and followed by going on an 8-2 run to take a 71-64 lead with 5:14 remaining. Papapetrou sparked the rally with a basket and Vourliotakis capped the surge with a pair of layups.

SNHU would not threaten the rest of the way as the Ravens eventually opened their lead up to double-digits to cruise home for the victory.

The win also marked Franklin Pierce's fifth-straight triumph by a double-digit margin this season. 

Franklin Pierce shot 50 percent (29-of-58) from the field for the game and went a solid 79 percent (19-of-24) from the foul line. It marked the third-straight game the Ravens shot 50 percent or better from the floor.

The Ravens also forced Southern New Hampshire into 13 turnovers, while only committing nine miscues themselves.

The first half went back and forth before Franklin Pierce scored 10-straight points to turn a 26-all tie into a 36-26 advantage with 5:20 remaining until halftime. Cooper laid in a basket during the surge, while junior forward Matt Barboza (East Providence, R.I.) added a three-point play on a layup and free throw. Junior guard Curtis Christian (Harlem, N.Y.) capped the run with a deep triple.

The Ravens eventually took a 40-39 lead into the locker room at halftime.

Franklin Pierce returns to action on Saturday when the Ravens travel to Manchester to face Saint Anselm in a 3:30 p.m. tipoff.

For more information on Franklin Pierce men's basketball, please visit the team's page at athletics.franklinpierce.edu(.) To follow the program even further, please visit Franklin Pierce Athletics on YouTube (www.youtube.com/FranklinPierceSports), Twitter (www.twitter.com/FPUathletics) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce men's basketball apparel can do so on the athletic department's new online store at athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store(.)