A fast start to the second half got Central Connecticut to within single digits, but Wagner was able to hold on for a 70-48 win in men's basketball action on Saturday at the Spiro Sports Center. Central falls to 1-16 overall and 0-6 in the Northeast Conference with the loss. Wagner improves to 11-6 and 4-2 in the NEC.
Senior Brandon Peel was the only Blue Devil in double-figures and led CCSU with 15 points and eight rebounds.
Central opened the second half hitting 6-of-7 from the field to cut into a 10-point halftime deficit. Sophomore Mustafa Jones led the way scoring six points in the opening five minutes of the period and his layup made it 36-32 with 15:18 to play.
The Seahawks maintained the lead, however, and used an 20-5 spurt to push the game out of reach. After a three-point play by Peel midway through the second half made it 46-38, Wagner quickly doubled its lead with eight unanswered points. A layup by Mike Aaman made it 54-38 with 7:32 remaining and Central was unable to get the deficit under double-figures the rest of the way.
Wagner opened the game holding the Blue Devils scoreless for the first 8:24 before back-to-back hoops by freshman Austin Nehls and Peel made it 12-4. A dunk by Michael Carey opened a streak of 10 straight points to give the Seahawks their largest lead of the half at 22-4.
The Blue Devils held Wagner to just 2-of-8 shooting over the final six minutes of the period to cut into the deficit. A layup by sophomore Kevin Seymour opened an 11-4 run to end the half to get CCSU within 28-18 at the intermission.
Peel led CCSU with 15 points and eight rebounds. Nehls chipped in with eight points and seven rebounds, while freshman Jahlil Nails scored nine points on three three-pointers.
Central was limited to 35.2 percent shooting (19-of-54) overall. The Blue Devils were 6-of-9 from the foul line.
Wagner was led by Corey Henson who scored 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting. Michael Carey added a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
The Seahawks shot 50.8 percent (30-of-59) from the field overall and was 6-of-11 (.545) from the foul line. Wagner held a 42-27 edge in rebounds.
The Blue Devils return home to open a four-game homestand when they host Robert Morris on Thursday, Jan. 21. Tickets can be purchased at CCSUTickets.com or at the box office upon entry. Admission for all CCSU students, faculty and staff is free of charge with a valid Blue Chip card. All of the action can also be seen live, for free, on NECFrontRow.com.