March 6, 2011
Men's Season Ends With Semifinal Loss at Long Island on Sunday
The Central Connecticut men's basketball season came to an end
on Sunday afternoon with a 69-67 loss on the road to Long Island in
the Northeast Conference semifinals. With the loss Central ends
the year with a 19-12 overall mark. Long Island advances and will
host NEC finals on Wednesday night, and is now 26-5 overall on the
season. Junior Robby
Ptacek led the Blue Devils with 15 points, 13 of which came in
the second half.
Central took a 15-4 lead on the Blackbirds in the first 7:19
of the game. The only three of the game for junior Ken
Horton stretched the lead to 11, as the Blue Devils held the
Blackbirds to only one field goal in their first five attempts and
they forced five turnovers.
With the Blue Devils holding a 17-8 lead, Horton picked up his
second foul with 11:12 on the clock before halftime.
The Blackbirds outscored the Blue Devils 24-11 over the final
nine minutes of the half, as Central struggled to score in the
halfcourt. Central his just 5-of-15 from the field to end the
break and trailed 32-28 after leading by as many as 11.
Long Island hit on its last five attempts and 7-of-11 from the
floor to end the half. Freshman Jason Brickman led all scorers
with 11, including 3-of-3 from three. Thompson and freshman Terrell
Allen each had six points for the Blue Devils. Horton played
just eight minutes and scored five points.
Central retook the lead in the first four minutes of the
second half and led 38-35 with under 15:00 to play. They began the
half on an 10-3 run and held LIU to 1-of-7 shooting. A quick 5-0
run for the Blackbirds game them back a two point lead and forced a
Central answered with a 5-0 run of its own to take a 43-42
lead after a three-point play from freshman Terrell
Allen. The team's traded baskets, and then with the Blue
Devils down three, Thompson forced a pair of turnovers that led to
four straight points and a 49-48 Central lead.
A 9-0 run for the Blackbirds gave the home team a 57-49 lead
with under six minutes to play.
Down eight, the Blue Devils used a three from Thompson and
then two straight from Ptacek to cut the lead to 61-60 with 1:51 on
the clock. After a three from LIU, Allen's bucket made it a two
point game with a minute to play. Central forced a turnover but
Allen missed a shot at the other end.
A pair of free-throws by Long Island gave them a 66-62 lead but
Ptacek hit another three to make it 66-65 with under 20 seconds to
play. Two free-throws for LIU made it a three-point game and a
late three from the Blue Devils was off the mark.
Ptacek's 15 led the Blue Devils. Allen and Horton each added 13
points and Allen had a career-high eight rebounds, including six on
the offensive end. Thompson had 11 points, nine assists, four
rebounds and four steals in the game. His four steals give him 202
in his four-year career with Central. He also finishes with 1,327
career points, 483 assists and 459 rebounds.