Blue Devils Win Third Straight at Home, Top Fairleigh Dickinson on Saturday Afternoon

Blue Devils Win Third Straight at Home, Top Fairleigh Dickinson on Saturday Afternoon

The Central Connecticut State University men's basketball team won basketball team won back-to-back games for the first time this season, topping Fairleigh Dickinson 77-67 on Saturday afternoon. Central led by as many as 19 in the first half, but needed a late surge in the second half to improve to 4-6 in Northeast Conference play and 7-14 overall. Junior Shemik Thompson led the Blue Devils with 24 points in the victory. They improve to 5-2 at home this season.

Central stormed out to a 15-4 lead, making 6-of-7 from the field to start the game, including three hoops underneath by sophomore Chris Baskerville. Senior Joe Seymore and junior Markeys Deans each had a three in the first five minutes to spark the Blue Devils to the 11 point lead.

After Fairleigh Dickinson cut it to four, 18-14, the Blue Devils scored five straight, including a three from Thompson, to make it 23-14 with under 10 to play before the break. The Central run reached 16-3 following a three-point play by Deans, and the lead was 34-17.

The lead reached as many as 19, but the Knights outscored the Blue Devils 9-4 to end the period and cut the lead to 42-28 at halftime. Central made 15 of its first 20 shots from the field, but finished the half missing four straight shots. The Blue Devils made 15-of-24 shots in the half, good for 62.5 percent, the best shooting first half of the season. Thompson and Seymore each had 10 points at the break, and Central held a 19-12 edge in rebounding.

The Knights opened the second half scoring seven of the first nine points and cutting the lead to 44-35. Seymore's third three of the game made it 49-38 before the Knights scored four straight to ut the lead to 49-42. The Blue Devils struggled offensively, scoring just 11 points over a 10 minutes span while FDU cut the lead to seven.

Following a pair of free-throws on a technical foul, the Knights scored a three-point play to cut the lead to 49-47 with 13:29 on the clock. The run by Fairleigh Dickinson to start the half reached 19-7.

A free-throw by Thompson, Seymore's fourth three and a jumper by Thompson pushed the lead back to 55-47 at the midway point of the half. The Knights answered with a 9-0 run and took their first lead of the game, 56-55 with just over seven to play.

Thompson answered for the Blue Devils with eight straight points. A Baskerville bucket underneath pushed the run to 10-0 and the Blue Devil lead to 65-56 with under four to play.

Central was led by Thompson who had his third 20+ point game of the season with a team-high 23 points. Seymore added a season-high 21 while Deans had 13 and Baskerville added 11.

The Blue Devils return to action on Thursday night at Bryant beginning at 7:30 p.m. They will also play the Bulldogs on Saturday, Feb. 6, at home beginning at 3:30 p.m.

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