Senior Joe Seymore and junior David Simmons each scored 15 points, but Central Connecticut State University fell to Long Island University by a score of 69-65 on the road on Saturday afternoon. The Blue Devils fall to 2-4 overall and 1-1 in the Northeast Conference, while LIU improves to 4-3 on the season and 2-0 in NEC play.
The Blue Devils found themselves down nine points, at 65-56, with 2:49 remaining in the game before going on a 6-0 run to cut it to 65-62 with only 1:05 to play. Seymore and Simmons, along with junior Shemik Thompson each recorded a basket during the late stretch. Free throws by Long Island gave the Blackbirds the 69-65 victory.
The two teams traded baskets to start the game as Long Island held a slight 10-9 advantage with 11:22 left in the first half. Seymore and Simmons were integral at the beginning, tallying five and four points during the stretch, respectively.
The Blackbirds used an 8-0 run late in the first period to take a 28-18 lead with only 2:31 to play before the break. Senior Jaytornah Wisseh scored five straight points during the stretch, connecting on a three-pointer and a layup off of a high ball screen.
Central got back into the game before the half with a 6-0 run of their own. Sophomore Robby Ptacek drove the lane and finished amongst plenty of Blackbirds and then went two for two from the free throw line to pull the Blue Devils within six. Simmons then recorded his third bucket of the first half, finishing a layup on a fastbreak with 57 seconds left.
LIU went into the locker room with the 28-24 lead, recording a 39.3 field goal percentage and knocking down five three-pointers on only 10 attempts. The Blue Devils only shot 28.6 percent from the field, but forced nine Blackbird turnovers in the opening frame.
After Long Island recorded a 5-0 run early in the second period, on five points by Wisseh, CCSU tallied eight points to LIU's two to make it 45-42 with 11:58 to play in the game. Thompson knocked down two threes during the stretch to get Central back into the game.
The Blackbirds stretched the lead out to 13 points, at 55-42, as they scored 10 straight with only 8:36 remaining in the game. Sophomore Michael Culpo hit two three-pointers in a row to start the run for Long Island.
Seymore connected on three of seven three-pointers for his 15 points, while adding six rebounds in the loss. Simmons had his 15 points on 7-13 shooting and recorded a game high seven rebounds. Thompson finished with nine points and three assists for the Blue Devils.
Long Island was led by Wisseh with 20 points, eight assists and five rebounds. Freshman Kenny Onyechi recorded seven blocks, while Culpo added 15 points for the Blackbirds. LIU shot 50 percent from the field, including 9-20 from behind the arc.
CCSU will next travel to New Hampshire on December 9 at 7:00 p.m., while Long Island will next play at Iona on December 9 for a 7:30 p.m. tip.