Morrisville State men uses second half to power past Penn St. Berks, 97-84

Morrisville State men uses second half to power past Penn St. Berks, 97-84

READING, Pa. – Morrisville State College men's basketball posted a 59-point second half to secure the 97-84 North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) victory over host Penn St. Berks Saturday afternoon in Reading, Pennsylvania.

The win completes the weekend sweep over NEAC competition for the Mustangs, who improve their record to 9-4 overall, 6-1 in NEAC play.

Freshman Kevin Dennis (Bronx, N.Y.) led the Morrisville State pack with his eighth double-double of the season behind a 24 point, 14 rebound performance, adding three steals to his tallies, while converting 10-of-12 attempts from the charity stripe. Kenny Bonaparte (Soundview, N.Y.) poured in 19 to go along with three assists and six rebounds, collecting a majority of his points from the free throw line where he hit 11-of-14.

Trent Ward (Auburn, N.Y.) added 18 points in the win, 13 of which came in the second half, rounding out the contest with five rebounds and two steals. Jordan Hoose (Hudson, N.Y.) just missed the double-double with a 10 point, nine rebound effort in the win for the Mustangs.

Penn St. Berks and Morrisville State played to a back and forth opening half with neither team leading by more than five points, until the Nittany Lions made a closing two minute 6-2 push to claim the 44-38 lead at the break.

After a quick jumper by Baba Waples in the opening 30 seconds of the second half to take a seven point host lead, Ward sparked the Mustangs with eight straight points in a 16-2 run, including back-to-back three's, to give the visitors the seven point lead just five  minutes in.

Berks was able to pull within four with just over five minutes remaining in the contest on a three by Waples, but Morrisville State then put together a 11-6 run to regain a seven point advantage over the ensuing two minutes and followed with hitting 10-of-12 free throws down the stretch to earn the 13-point conference victory.

Morrisville State dominated the paint in the second half, outscoring the Nittany Lions 26-6 in the paint alone, while adding an additional eight points off second chance opportunities as they shot 60.7% from the floor in the period, and 82.1% from the free throw line.

The Mustangs finished the contest hitting 51.7% from the floor, and converting 33-of-41 total opportunities from the free throw line (80.5%).

Morrisville State returns to the court Wednesday, traveling to cross town rival SUNY Polytechnic (9-6, 6-2 NEAC) for a 7 p.m. NEAC tip.

Morrisville State College's 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 and has been lauded for its exemplary, innovative and effective community service programs.

The college was ranked among the Best Regional Colleges in the North by U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges 2016 issue and was also recognized in the Top Public Schools, Regional Colleges North in the 2016 Best Colleges rankings. For more information about Morrisville State College, visit