EASTON, Mass. (December 2, 2017) – Franklin Pierce University men's basketball senior forward Jordan Lackey (South Plainfield, N.J.) racked up 18 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks, but the Ravens dropped an 82-78 decision to Northeast-10 Conference opponent Stonehill College Saturday afternoon at the Merkert Gymnasium.
Lackey converted 50.0% (7-of-14) of his shot attempts. He was one of four Raven starters who tallied double-digit points. Teammate and team captain Mike McDevitt (Cumberland, Maine) poured in 13 points on 5-of-6 (83.3%) efficiency from the court. Doyin Fadojutimi (Temple Hills, Md.) also dropped 13 points to go along with three rebounds, one block, and one steal. Asante Sandiford (Boston, Mass.) recorded his third double-double of the campaign with 11 points and 12 caroms. Sophomore guard Sean Fasoyiro (Houston, Texas) tallied nine points, four boards, two blocks and one theft in 17 minutes off the pine.
Stonehill senior guard KJ Lee led all players with a game-high 23 points and eight assists. Lee also snagged six boards as well. Fellow starter Will Moreton chipped in a double-double effort with 19 points and 11 boards. Brandon Twitty produced 17 points, four rebounds, and two steals.
This was the third game during the Ravens 2017-18 schedule that they shot above 50.0% (52.6%) from hardwood; however, it was the first time FPU lost when they shot a high percentage. The Crimson and Grey outrebounded (41-to-36) and outscored the Skyhawks in the paint (44-to-32), but they committed more miscues (17-to-9) and lost the battle at the charity stripe (87.5%-to-60.0%).
Both squads traded three-balls to begin the duel as Joel Berroa drained his from the wing and Lackey converted his trey uncontested from the left corner. With the game tied, the Skyhawks manufactured seven straight points to take a 10-3 advantage, which led to a 30-second timeout by the Ravens. Following the stoppage, Amanie Craddock (Spring Valley, N.Y.) produced a wide-open three from the corner to cut the deficit to four.
The Ravens trailed by four, 16-12 as Fasoyiro converted a layup from the low right block assisted by Lackey. On the next trip down the floor, Lee drained a connection from downtown to push the Skyhawks ahead 19-12. Two McDevitt freebies brought the Skyhawk edge to seven, 21-14, but Twitty drove to the rack from the perimeter for the hoop and harm as Stonehill led by double figures, 24-10.
With the hosts ahead by 12, 29-17, Fadojutimi buried a three from the right corner with a man in his face. Lee then tallied four straight points which included a floater in the lane off a Ryan Roach theft to increase the Stonehill advantage to 13, 33-20.
A brief scoring drought ensued until Lee drained his second attempt from three-point land to add to his teams lead. Trailing 38-22, Franklin Pierce erupted for a 19-4 run over the final 6:27 of the quarter as good perimeter ball movement and defensive stops were keys for the guests to trail 42-41 at halftime. Fadojutimi began the binge by corralling a rebound off his own missed layup. He hung in the air and drained the bucket for the second chance points. On the next Raven possession, Lackey drove from the top of the key and into the restricted area for a lay-in as the Skyhawks stopped play with a timeout.
Stonehill took the timeout in hopes of the Ravens not mounting a bigger run. Moreton upped the edge to 14 by converting a layup with his back to the basket off an inbounds play. His make did not stop the Raven momentum as the guests scored the next nine points to cut the deficit to two possessions, 40-35 as David Bradbury (Deep River, Conn.) dished off the rock to Fadojutimi for a three-ball. Moreton again increased the lead for Stonehill, but the Ravens closed the half with the final six points. McDevitt buried a long-range connection from the right wing off a Falu Seck (Washington, D.C.) pass. Seck then was fouled by Owen Chose and split his free-throws. Sandiford capped off the scoring with a layup.
Lackey gave the Ravens their first lead of the game to begin the second half, 43-42 as he drove from the left wing into the right side of the paint for an easy layup. Twitty pushed the hosts back ahead by draining a three contested by McDevitt. Sandiford then went to work down low as he stayed with his own miss and put the offensive board back in for two points. On the next Raven possession, the senior forward drove into the paint and converted a layup while being fouled. Sandiford completed the and1 to recapture the lead for the Ravens. Roach answered by draining a three from the right corner to tie up the score at 48 all. Seck and Lackey each recorded buckets in the paint as Pierce held a four-point 52-48 advantage that led to a timeout by Stonehill.
Moreton scored the next five points in the contest as Stonehill once again grabbed the lead at 53-52. Franklin Pierce regained the advantage and it grew to five, 60-55 following two Lackey freebies. Six straight by the Skyhawks moved them ahead 61-60. With the Skyhawks looking to increase their lead by three, Fasoyiro stuffed Chose and pinned the rock against the backboard. The Ravens got possession and Lackey split his free throws at the charity stripe to tie the contest at 61.
Both teams' swapped buckets until Sandiford made one free throw, Fadojutimi drove the lane and the sophomore guard rifled home a trey as the Ravens edge grew to a contest-best six, 69-63. Behind by five, Lee and Moreton poured in two markers apiece to cut their deficit to one, 70-69 with 6:10 left to play.
Twitty went to work and notched five in a row for Stonehill as he sank a three from the left wing and manufactured a potential three-point play. Twitty missed the freebie which would have completed the and1 as the duel was tied 74-74 with 3:43 remaining.
Moreton was fouled by Fadojutimi off an inbounds play and went to the stripe for two. He knocked down both attempts to push the Skyhawks back in front 76-74. Lackey responded with the next four points both on driving layups as the Ravens led 78-76 with 1:45 to go.
Lackey had a one-and-one opportunity at the charity stripe, but he missed the attempt to move his squad ahead by three. On the next trip down the floor for the hosts, Joel Berroa hit a dagger wing three ball, which regained the edge to Stoneville 79-78. Franklin Pierce brought the ball up the court and was developing a play, but traveling was called on Sandiford as possession returned to Stonehill. Lee was fouled by FPU and he split his attempts at the line. This led to FPU having one more chance to tie the contest. Lackey caught the ball and again, drove towards the rack, but his layup was off the mark as he took contact. The ball was tipped around and eventually collected by Lee who iced the game with the final free throws.
The Ravens head back to Rindge to the Fieldhouse on Tuesday night when they host NE10 opponent Merrimack College at 7:30 p.m.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens ), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce men's basketball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).