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Men's Basketball Rallies Past Brown on Saturday, 68-62

Men's Basketball Rallies Past Brown on Saturday, 68-62

The Central Connecticut men's basketball team erased a double-digit deficit in the second half to rally past Brown, 68-62, on Saturday at the Pizzitola Sports Center. The win extended CCSU's win streak to five games as it improved to 5-3 on the season. Junior Austin Nehls scored a game-high 20 points to lead the Blue Devils.

Central is back in action on Wednesday, Dec. 6, at DePaul.

Nehls finished 7-of-11 from the field, 4-of-8 from the arc, and grabbed seven rebounds. Junior Eric Bowles chipped in a career-high 14 points, 12 in the second half, to go with six assists and junior Deion Bute had 12 points and eight rebounds.

The five-game win streak for the Blue Devils is its longest since winning five straight from Nov. 19-Dec. 3, 2011.

Brown led 31-27 aft halftime and would push the lead to double-digits early in the second half with an 14-0 run. Zach Hunsaker hit three foul shots to start the run, before Cambridge hit consecutive treys and Hunsaker hit another to push the lead to 45-30. 

After another trey by Hunsaker made it 50-39 with 13:09 remaining the Blue Devils would mount their comeback. The Central defense would hold to Bears without a field goal, and just four free throws, over the next 6:39 to lead the rally.

A three-pointer by Nehls with 12:43 to play began a run of nine unanswered points. Nehls would score five in a row, followed by consecutive buckets from junior Deion Bute to make it 50-48.

The Blue Devils would eventually tie the game at 54-all after a layup by Bute and a foul shot from senior Shakaris Laney with 7:14 to go. 

A layup by Obi Okolie with 6:26 to play would end Brown's field goal drought, but CCSU would respond with five straight points to take its first lead of the second half. A jumper by Nehls with 4:15 to go made it 59-58.

After a Bears layup with 4:00 remaining, CCSU would close the game by outscoring Brown, 9-2, to complete the comeback. Junior Tyler Kohl hit two foul shots with 25 seconds left to close the scoring, 68-62.

Brown would hold a slim lead for much of the opening half after builing an 8-3 lead to open the game. Desmond Cambridge, who hit three early trifectas, would open the game with a trey and then give Brown the six-point lead with another at the 16:19 mark. 

The Blue Devils would hold the Bears to one field goal in a 5:39 span to take its first lead of the period. A layup by sophomore Joe Hugley tied the game at 15-15, before a foul shot from senior Mustafa Jones put CCSU ahead with 7:04 left in the half.

Central would take its largest lead of the period after a Jones dunk and a three-pointer from Kohl made it 23-19.

The Bears would respond with 10 straight points to regain the lead it would maintain into the intermission. Brandon Anderson opened the spurt with a three-pointer and closed the run with a jumper to make it 29-23 with 1:58 left in the half. 

A layup by Jones would snap the string and the teams alternated baskets into the break. Nehls hit a transition layup to make it 31-27 at halftime.

Central finished the game shooting 25-of-55 (.455) from the field and 7-of-18 (.389) from the arc. The Blue Devils outrebounded the Bears, 44-23, and held a 32-16 edge in points in the paint. 

Brown was led by Cambridge with 17 points. The Bears shot 20-of-54 (.370) from the floor and 9-of-28 (.321) from the arc. The Bears converted 17 CCSU turnovers in 18 points.

The Blue Devils travel to DePaul on Wednesday, Dec. 6.

 

CCSU DEPARTMENT OF ATHLETICS

1615 STANLEY STREET

NEW BRITAIN, CT 06050

(860) 832-BLUE

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