MORRISVILLE, N.Y. – Visiting Cazenovia College men's basketball battled back from a 15 point halftime deficit, and rallied in extra time, as they picked up a 92-82 overtime victory over host Morrisville State College Saturday afternoon in North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) action.
The loss drops Morrisville State to 3-3 overall, 1-1 in NEAC play, while Cazenovia improves to 3-3 overall, picking up their first conference win of the season.
Morrisville State freshman Trent Ward (Auburn, N.Y.) led the Mustang efforts with a game high 24 points, adding four rebounds to his tallies while two additional teammates contributed double figures on the day.
All five starters posted double figures for Cazenovia, including Avery Wilmore who led the charge with 19 points and seven assists. Ryan Gavin, Marquane Silvers and Nate Hudson each tallied 16, while teammate Daniel Cunningham added 13.
Gavin and Silvers registered a double-double, adding a combined 21 rebounds to their tallies on the day.
Cazenovia got off to a slow start in the first half, shooting a mere 33.3 percent from the floor as Morrisville State took the 40-25 lead into the locker room after the first period.
The second quickly became a game of two halves though, as the Wildcats came out on fire and put together a 14-2 run over the course of a five minute span to make it a two-point ball game with under 10 minutes to go in regulation.
Morrisville State maintained the slim margin late in the game until a free throw by Cunningham made it a two-point ball game with 16 seconds to go on the first attempt, and then collected his own rebound on the second to regain possession for the visitors.
Silvers powered his way in to the blocks to post the tying score with 10 seconds left on the clock, forcing the overtime period.
In overtime, Gavin nailed a three from the top of the key to give Cazenovia their first lead of the contest since the 14:15 mark of the first half, and one that wouldn't be relinquished as Morrisville State struggled to rebound from the deficit down the stretch.
Cazenovia rebounded from their poor shooting in the first half to finish hitting 45.3% from the floor on 34-of-75 shots, while Morrisville State dipped to 39.7% on the day. The Mustangs did win the battle on the glass, 51-42.
The Mustangs return to the court Tuesday for a program first, traveling to nearby Colgate University for a Division I – Division III cross over match up with the Raiders. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. on the Colgate campus.
Morrisville State sets the world in motion for students. Curricula are enriched with applied learning and pave the way for opportunity at both the Morrisville and Norwich campuses. An action-oriented, interactive learning lab, the college is a national leader in technology. Lauded for its exemplary, innovative and effective community service programs, the college was named to the 2012 President's Higher Community Education Service Honor Roll. The college was recognized, by U.S. News and World Report, in its top tier Best Regional Colleges list and ranked second among regional colleges nationwide for outperforming its anticipated graduation rate. Visit www.morrisville.edu to experience, Morrisville in motion.