RINDGE, N.H. (January 3, 2018) – Franklin Pierce University men's basketball sophomore guard Falu Seck (Washington, D.C.) dropped a career and team-high 23 points as the Ravens sneaked past the no. 10 regionally-ranked Jefferson Rams 90-88 in double-overtime Wednesday afternoon in non-conference action at the Fieldhouse. With the win, the Ravens fourth victory in a row moves the Crimson and Grey to 7-5 overall and the Rams drop to 10-6.
Seck was 8-of-19 (42.1%) from the floor and grabbed seven rebounds while dishing out three assists over 41 minutes of play. Four other starters tallied double-figures as well as Asante Sandiford (Boston, Mass.) and Mike McDevitt (Cumberland, Maine) recorded double-doubles (19 points/12 rebounds & 15 points/12 rebounds), McDevitt also racked up a person-high in blocked shots with five. Jordan Lackey (South Plainfield, N.J.) poured in 11 markers while Doyin Fadojutimi (Temple Hills, Md.) stuffed the stat sheet with 11 points, a game-high eight assists, six rebounds, four steals and three blocks.
For Jefferson, Alexander Gorton manufactured a game-best 26 points, as he was one of three Ram players to play all 50 minutes of the game. In 44 minutes off the bench, sophomore forward Prince Hickson snagged 20 rebounds while producing 16 markers. Teammate Yevgen Sakhniuk was one carom shy of a double-double with 15 points and nine boards.
Franklin Pierce set a new team season-high with 24 assists, 11 blocks and 50 total rebounds in the contest. They also outproduced Jefferson in the paint (42-to-32), off turnovers (18-to-11) during second chances (14-to-9) and on the fast break (17-to-2).
With 10 minutes to go in the first half, Gorton buried a long-range attempt to give the guests their biggest lead in the contest 28-20. Over the next few minutes, the Ravens went on a 13-4 scoring run to move ahead by one, 33-32. Freshman forward Devonte McCall (Amherst, Mass.) began the run as he connected on a catch and shoot three-ball from the right corner. McDevitt and Seck each added threes until Lackey drove the baseline off a designed inbounds play for an easy two to cap the binge. The duel was knotted at 35 all heading into the final minute, but Sandiford made sure the Ravens went into the intermission with the lead as he notched a deep connection as the Crimson and Grey pushed ahead 38-35.
The game was tied 51-51 before the Ravens established their biggest edge of the contest on the strength of an 11-3 run. Freshman Trent Dixon (Upper Marlboro, Md.) started the run off by hitting a rainbow three-ball from the top of the key. Amanie Craddock (Spring Valley, N.Y.) continued the three-point barrage as the Ravens led by four, 57-53. A Seck layup and a Sandiford and1 conversion, which was FPU's first free throw attempt of the game, put the squad ahead 62-54 with 5:56 left to play.
Jefferson immediately notched seven straight points off a trey and a theft and coast-to-coast lay-in by Gorton to pull within one 64-63 with 4:12 to play. Coach Chadbourne took a 30-second timeout and then Seck drained a spot-up three from the top of the key to increase the Raven edge to four. Seck pushed the FPU lead to five, 70-65 by burying another three, this time from the corner, however, the Ravens could not add on to their lead. Hickson chipped in two freebies with 1:48 to go which made it a one-possession game. Missed shots from Sandiford, Kaison Randolph, Fadojutimi and Josh Bradanese set the Ravens up with the rock and the lead at the 19-second mark. The Ravens promptly turned the ball over on the inbounds and Randolph tied the game at 70 all with a wing three. Seck had a contested look at the game winner, but the shot was off as the match went into overtime.
In the extra period, Franklin Pierce jumped ahead by five, 77-72 following a fast break, falling scoop, hoop, and harm by Seck. Jefferson answered right back when Bradanese sank a three-ball off a dribble handoff from the right wing. Two McDevitt free-throws had the Ravens ahead by four with 41 ticks left in the extra period. On the next trip down the court, Randolph drained a three-pointer with a hand in his face to move his squad within one. Seck was fouled and he split his charity stripe attempts with 15 seconds to go. Randolph took the rock into the paint and was fouled with five seconds left. He made both free throws that set up the Ravens for the final shot. Fadojutimi came off a screen, drove the length of the floor and had a clean look at the game-winning layup, but the layup hung on the rim as McDevitt tipped it home. It looked like the Ravens won in spectacular fashion, but basket interference was called and the teams played another five-minute extra frame.
The second overtime frame was low scoring, as there was a two-minute point drought until Gorton spot up and sank a three from the right wing. Sandiford scored the next three points in the contest via the charity stripe to tie the duel. With 47 seconds left, Fadojutimi picked off the ball from Gorton and went the other way for a fast break two that moved the Ravens ahead 87-85. Following that lay-in, Sakhniuk drove underneath for a layup and was fouled. He made the free throw as Jefferson led 89-88. Seck responded by throwing in a dagger, an isolation take to the rack with contact. The sophomore went to the line, drained the free throw and more importantly gave the Ravens a 90-88 edge. FPU had to make one more stop on defense. McDevitt recorded his fifth block of the game as he swatted away Jordan Purcell's layup, but the ball remained in Jefferson's possession. Randolph put up a desperation three that was off the mark as the Ravens began 2018 with a victory.
The Ravens return to the hardwood and Northeast-10 Conference play on Saturday when they travel to Le Moyne for a 3:00 p.m. tip-off.
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).