The Central Connecticut men's basketball team moved to a perfect 5-0 in Northeast Conference play with a 71-66 road victory at Mount St. Mary's on Thursday night. The win is the third straight for the Blue Devils and it pushes them to 8-7 overall on the season.
The 5-0 start in the league is the first for Central since the 1999-00 season, when they began league play 12-0.
Senior Ken Horton led the offense with 23 points, and grabbed nine rebounds in the victory. Senior Robby Ptacek added 14, as did freshman Kyle Vinales.
Horton moved into a tie for second place on the all-time scoring list with 1,731 points, just three points shy of tying and four from moving into first place all-time past Damian Johnson. Johnson's record has stood since 1993, almost 20 years.
The Mount led 19-13 early, and held a pair of six point leads before the break. The Blue Devils scored the final 10 points of the first half and took a 36-30 lead at the break. The 10-0 run lasted the final 2:49 of the half, and included a pair of threes by Vinales.
Horton had 13 in the first half, including 7-of-9 from the line. The Mount held an 18-15 advantage on the boards, including 10 offensive rebounds. They had 28 of their 30 points come in the paint.
It was 42-34 with 15:23 left after a basket underneath by junior Joe Efese. He hit all four of his field goal attempts in the game.
A quick 6-0 spurt, including three straight offensive rebounds, and buckets by Horton, sophomore De'Angelo Speech and Efese, made it 48-34 with under 15 minutes to play.
But Mount St. Mary's would come back and force a tight final seven minutes.
They cut it to 55-52 with an 8-0 run that took just under two minutes. They tied the game at 59-59 with 7:07 on the clock. A dunk from senior David Simmons and a running jumper from Vinales made it 63-59.
A pair of free-throws from Horton made it 65-62 with under four minutes to play. With a three point lead, Ptacek hit a three to push the lead to six. The Mount answered with a three of their own and it was 69-66 with 1:58 to play. The Mount didn't score in the final 1:58, and the Blue Devils hit 18-of-23 at the line to secure their third straight win.
Horton led all scorers with 23, his 41st career 20 point game. Ptacek and Vinales had 14, including the only three threes of the game for the Blue Devils. Vinales added four assists, four rebounds and three steals.
The Mount held a slim 32-30 advantage on the boards, but had only two offensive rebounds in the second half. Central forced 22 Mount turnovers.
Central returns to action on the road at Wagner on Saturday beginning at 7 p.m.
July 31, 2012 Men's Hoop Releases Non-Conference Slate
April 14, 2012 Horton's Club Wins Portsmouth Invitational Championship
April 13, 2012 Horton Has Solid Outing at Portsmouth
April 6, 2012 Horton to Attend Portsmouth Invitational
March 1, 2012 Devils Fall in NEC Tourney at Wagner
February 28, 2012 Horton and Vinales Earn Postseason NEC Honors
February 27, 2012 Horton, Vinales Earn NEC Weekly Honors
February 25, 2012 Blue Devils Win Over Wagner; Teams Will Play Again on Thursday
February 23, 2012 Horton's Career Night Leads Blue Devils to Home Win
February 20, 2012 Vinales Earns Seventh Rookie Honor
February 18, 2012 Vinales Goes for 32 in Loss at Robert Morris
February 16, 2012 Men Snap Slide With 65-60 Win at St. Francis (PA)
February 12, 2012 Men's Hoop Falls at Home, 67-59, to Quinnipiac
February 8, 2012 Men's Hoops Drops Third Straight
February 4, 2012 Men Slip to 7-5 in NEC Play with Loss at LIU
February 2, 2012 Blue Devils Fall at SFNY on Thursday
January 28, 2012 Men Top FDU 69-62 on Saturday
January 26, 2012 Men Fall in OT at Home vs. Monmouth
January 21, 2012 Central Falls 62-61 at Sacred Heart
January 19, 2012 Blue Devils Move to 7-1 at Home
January 14, 2012 Men Suffer First Conference Loss
January 12, 2012 Blue Devils 5-0 in NEC After Road Win at Mount
January 9, 2012 Vinales Wins Sixth NEC Rookie Honor
January 7, 2012 Men Now 4-0 in NEC, Top RMU by 15
January 5, 2012 Men's Hoop 3-0 in NEC Play After Home Win
January 5, 2012 Men Look to Move to 3-0 in League Play
January 3, 2012 CCSU and CPTV Sports Announce TV Deal
December 30, 2011 Men Drop Fifth Straight, Lose at UMass
December 30, 2011 Men Back in Action at UMass
December 22, 2011 Blue Devils Lose at Home for First Time
December 22, 2011 MBB Hosts LaSalle at 7 p.m.
December 19, 2011 Vinales Named Rookie of the Week
December 17, 2011 Wildcats Hold Off CCSU, 70-64
December 17, 2011 Blue Devils Take On Northwestern
December 12, 2011 Vinales Makes it Four Out of Five
December 10, 2011 Blue Devils Fall 90-80 at Brown
December 7, 2011 Men Play Tough in Loss at Michigan State
December 5, 2011 Horton Named Player of the Week
December 3, 2011 Men Win Overtime Thriller Over SHU
December 1, 2011 Central Opens Big at Bryant
December 1, 2011 Men Open NEC Play at Bryant on TV Tonight
November 28, 2011 Ptacek, Vinales Earn NEC Honors
November 26, 2011 Blue Devils Fly Past Hawks, 92-58
November 25, 2011 Blue Devils and Hawks at Detrick Gym
November 22, 2011 Two Straight for Men's Basketball
November 21, 2011 Vinales Earns Second NEC Rookie Honor
November 19, 2011 Ptacek Shoots CCSU to Home Win
November 17, 2011 Men's Game at UMass Moved to Dec. 30
November 14, 2011 Niagara Falls and a Rookie of the Week
November 14, 2011 Blue Devils Drop Overtime Thriller
November 11, 2011 Men's Hoop Drops Opener
November 2, 2011 CCSU Third, Horton Named All-Conference
October 31, 2011 CT6 Breakfast Postponed to Nov. 8
October 17, 2011 Men's Hoop Begins Practice
October 12, 2011 Speech Captures 16th Blue Devil Run
October 4, 2011 Hoops Season Tickets Now On Sale
October 3, 2011 2011-12 Basketball Tip-Off Dinner
September 13, 2011 Men's Hoop Releases 2011-12 Schedule
August 29, 2011 Horton Among Nation's Most Valuable