The Central Connecticut men's basketball team lost for the first
time in five games dropping a 67-56 decision at UMBC on Wednesday
night. With the loss the Blue Devils fall to 4-4 on the season
heading into Saturday's game on the road at Rhode Island.
Sophomore Ken Horton led the way for Central Connecticut with 21
points and 10 rebounds in the loss. It was his third double-double
of the season. CCSU returns to action at 4 p.m. on Saturday at
URI. The game will be broadcast live on Cox Sports Television as
well as the CCSU ESPN Radio Network.
UMBC climbed out to a quick 7-2 lead but the Blue Devils answered by scoring 10 of the next 14 points to take their first lead of the game, 12-11, with 10:26 on the clock. The team's traded baskets for much of the remainder of the period before the Blue Devils took a 23-21 advantage on a three by Horton, the first of the game for CCSU.
UMBC answered by scoring the final five points before the break. Neither team shot the ball well in the first half and the Retrievers led 26-23 when the teams went to the locker rooms. The Blue Devils hit only 11-of-30 from the field and 1-of-8 from three while the home team was 10-of-26 from the floor and 1-of-6 from behind the arc.
Central Connecticut held a 23-14 edge on the boards including seven offensive rebounds against only one for UMBC. The Blue Devils went to the free-throw line only once in the half and Horton missed the only opportunity. UMBC was 5-of-7 from the charity stripe in the half.
UMBC opened up a four-point lead at 30-26 four minutes into the second half before a Joe Seymore bucket and a Horton offensive rebound and put back tied the game at 30-30. A Horton three on the next possession gave CCSU the 33-30 lead. UMBC responded with a 9-0 run over the next 2:30 minutes to take a 39-33 lead, their largest lead of the game to that point.
Back-to-back conventional three point plays for senior Marcus Palmer and sophomore Shemik Thompson cut it to 41-39 with 10:08 on the clock. A Thompson runner in the lane tied the game at 45-45 with under eight minutes to play.
UMBC answered with a 15-2 run over the next four minutes to take a 60-47 lead with under three minutes to play in the game. Seven straight points by the Blue Devils, including a three by Seymore, his first of the game, made it 60-54 with 1:09 on the clock. The Blue Devils were able to get no closer as UMBC made seven straight from the free-throw line to make it 68-54 with 20 seconds on the clock.
Horton led the way with 21 for CCSU, his 11th career game with 20 or more points. He added 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. Seymore added 13 points and seven rebounds.
The Blue Devils outrebounded UMBC 38-30 in the game, marking the seventh straight opponent they have outrebounded this season.
The Blue Devils return to action on Saturday at 4 p.m. on the road at Rhode Island. The game will be telecast on Cox Sports Television and will also be on the CCSU ESPN Radio Network on ESPN Radio 1410 in Hartford and ESPN Radio 1300 in New Haven.