Offensive explosion leads men into ECAC semifinals with 86-77 win over Marywood

FREDERICK, Md. – The Brandeis University men's basketball team set season-highs in points (86) and 3-pointers made (14) tonight as the Judges defeated Marywood College, 86-77, in the quarterfinals of the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III Tournament at Hood College. The Judges improve to 16-11 on the season and advance to tomorrow's semifinals, where they will face the winner of Marymount and Drew, in a 6 p.m. contest. The Pacers' campaign comes to an end at 17-11.

HOW IT HAPPENED – FIRST HALF

  • The first half of this back-and-forth affair featured five ties and seven lead changes.
  • The largest lead for either team was four points.
  • MC took a 22-18 lead with 7:52 to go on an Adam Boussatta 3-pointer.
  • The Judges responded with a 12-4 run over the next 3:24 to establish a 30-26 lead of their own on a steal and layup by sophomore Lawrence Sabir (Providence, R.I./LaSalle Academy).
  • Brandeis took a slim 32-31 lead into the break after the Pacers' Jaden Rhoden hit two late free throws.
  • The Judges were led by junior Eric D'Aguanno (Saunderstown, R.I./St. Andrews School) and senior Corey Sherman (Penn Valley, Pa./Lower Merion), who combined for 17 of the team's 32 points with nine and eight points, respectively. They hit 5-of-10 from beyond the arc in the first.
  • Marywood featured a balanced attack, with Tone Cockrell scoring eight points and Rhoden, Boussata and Jeremy Ringland each contributing seven.

HOW IT HAPPENED – SECOND HALF

  • The second half was more of the same, featuring four more ties and four more lead changes.  
  • Judge sophomore Chandler Jones (Springfield, Mass./Springfield Commonwealth Academy) caught fire in the early going, hitting three 3-pointers in the first five minutes, the last of which helped the Judges establish a 46-40 lead just 4:20 into the half.
  • The Pacers answered with a quick 13-3 spurt over the next two-and-a-half minutes, getting seven points from Tom DeFilippo and a traditional three-point play by Rhoden at the 13:33 mark to give MC a 50-49 lead.
  • Jack DeGroot hit a 3-pointer with just under 13 minutes to go to put Marywood ahead by four, 53-49.
  • Brandeis responded again, scoring 13 of the game's next 16 points to reestablish their six-point lead when D'Aguanno buried a trifecta with 8:37 left to make it 62-56 in favor of the Judges.
  • Marywood wasn't done yet, as Cockrell answered from deep to jumpstart the Pacer offense to an 8-2 run that tied the game at 64-64 after Rhoden hit 1-of-2 from the line with 6:17 to go.
  • After two free Brandeis free throws and an MC lay-up saw the game tied at 66-66 with 5:13 on the clock, Brandeis closed the game on a decisive 20-11 run.
  • Sabir knocked down a tough lay-up on the next possession, a bucket that ended up giving the Judges the lead for good with 4:53 left.
  • Brandeis was able to force a turnover, and grad student Latye Workman (Brooklyn, N.Y./Bedford Academy) hit two free throws to extend the lead. Workman grabbed the rebound on MC's next miss, and Jones got to the line for two freebies to get the lead quickly back to six points, 72-66, with 3:56 left.
  • Marywood's next three baskets were all 3-pointers, but Jones answered twice with free throws and a jumper, and junior Collin Sawyer (New London, Conn./New London) dialed long distance himself to keep the Pacers at bay.
  • Brandeis hit 7-of-8 from the line down the stretch to put the game away.
  • Jones scored 18 points in the second half, while Sherman had 12 and Sawyer 10.
  • Rhoden and Ringland each had 10 second-half points for MC.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

  • Nine different players for both teams finished in double figures in scoring – five for Brandeis and four for Marywood.
  • Sherman finished with a game-high 20 points, hitting 6-of-10 overall, 4-of-6 from 3-point range and 4-of-4 from the line. It was his sixth game with at least 20 points this season.
  • Thanks to his big second half, Jones finished with 19 points for the second game in a row after being held to single digit scoring in his final three regular-season games.
  • D'Aguanno added 14 points off the bench, including four 3-pointers, giving him 78 for the season – fifth most in school history – and 183 for his career, four shy of fourth place on the career list.
  • Sawyer netted 10 of his 13 in the second half, while Workman added 10 points for the contest.
  • Workman also stuffed the stat sheet with a game-high eight rebounds, two assists, two steals and two blocked shots. His 30 blocks this season are 15th all-time, and give him 72 for his career, two out of sixth place on the career list.
  • Sabir finished with eight points and eight assists, one shy of a season- and career-high.
  • The Judges' 86 points and 14 3-pointers each represented season-highs. The 14 trifectas were the most in a game for the Judges since setting a school-record 17 in 2016.
  • Marywood was led by Rhoden and Ringland, who each had 17 points, Cockrell, who had 13 off the bench and DeGroot, who finished with 10 points.
  • MC hit 50.9% (27-53) from the floor for the game, including 53.5% (16-30) in the second half, but the Judges' torched the nets for 60.9% after the break (14-23) to help pull away.
  • Brandeis had 14 3-pointers to eight for MC. The Judges also won the rebounding battle, 30-29, and forced 17 turnovers while committing just nine.

UP NEXT

  • Brandeis will meet either Marymount University or Drew University in tomorrow's ECAC semifinal. It will be the first-ever meeting between the Judges and either of the two schools. Marymount leads Drew, 38-32, at the half.
  • The Judges have won five-straight ECAC tournament games and eight of the last nine dating back to 1992.
  • They are in search of their third ECAC crown, having won titles in 1992 and 2011, when the tournament was a regional affair.