Jaspers Race Past Seahawks, 79-64
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
RIVERDALE, New York - Junior guard George Beamon scored a game-high 22 points to lead three Manhattan players in double figures as the Jaspers raced past turnover-prone UNCW, 79-64, in a Sears BracketBusters matchup Saturday at cozy Draddy Gymnasium.
The Jaspers of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference pushed their record to 19-10 on the season and 8-3 at home this season. The Seahawks fell to 9-18 and 4-11 on the road in Buzz Peterson's second campaign.
Manhattan improved to 5-4 in BracketBusters action by forcing 23 turnovers and limiting UNCW to a chilly 1-for-15 behind the three-point arc. UNCW missed its first 14 trey attempts and continued its lackluster play in BracketBusters, falling to 1-6 in the event since its debut in 2004.
"We fought back in the second half, but hitting just one three-pointer makes it tough," said Peterson. "You have to make shots against the zone and they pushed out on us. We and 18 assists and that was nice, but I don't like 23 turnovers."
Beamon scored 12 of his points in the second half to pace the Jaspers, who broke away late and outscored UNCW, 45-36, in the second half. Emmy Andujar scored 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds and Mohamed Koita chipped in 11 points for the Manhattan.
Junior forward Keith Rendleman reached double figures for the 24th time this season and led the Seahawks in scoring for the 12th contest with 21 points. Freshman guard Adam Smith was the only other Seahawk in double digits with 11 points.
In the first meeting between the two teams since 1996, Manhattan inched out to a 34-28 lead at halftime and led by as many as 19 points in the second half before UNCW rallied to slice the deficit to just seven points until falling for the fourth consecutive time.
In the second half, Beamon, from Roslyn, N.Y., scored eight points in the first 4:26 to help the Jaspers raise their lead to 44-31 and Andujar's bucket with just over 13 minutes remaining extended the margin to 53-34.
But UNCW reeled off 12 unanswered points behind Smith and Rendleman to climb back into the contest. Senior guard Trevor Deloach started the spurt with a floater in the lane at 13:01 and Freddie Jackson's layup with 10:32 on the clock closed the gap to 53-46.
However, Beamon and Andujar got the Jaspers rolling again and the lead swelled back to 62-50 with 7:36 remaining and the Jaspers cruised from there for their fourth straight BracketBusters victory.
The squads traded baskets in the early going before Beamon came to life. With the score tied at 14-all, the slender guard scored nine of Manhattan's next 11 points to give the Jaspers a seven-point advantage. Beamon's driving layup over Tanner Milson with 4:54 left in the first period put Manhattan on top, 25-18.
The first 20 minutes featured a combined 24 turnovers and 25 free throws attempted by the two teams. UNCW wound up with 14 miscues and Manhattan had 10 turnovers as the teams played aggressive basketball.
Beamon connected on the second of two free throws with 1:56 left in the period to maintain Manhattan's seven-point advantage, 31-24, before the Seahawks answered. Smith connected on a transition layup - his only bucket of the half - and Cedrick Williams converted both ends of a bonus situation with 50 seconds left in the period to slice the lead to 31-28.
Manhattan, however, scored on its next possession when Andujar drained a three ball from the top of the key to give the Jaspers a 34-28 margin at intermission.-
The Seahawks return to Wilmington for their home finale on Wednesday when VCU visits Trask Coliseum for a 7 p.m. tip-off. The Jaspers resume MAAC action next Friday at 7 p.m. at Draddy Gymnasium.
GAME NOTES: UNCW went 0-for-8 from long distance in the first half...Donte Morales picked up his third foul with 3:45 left in the opening period...The MAAC now stands 11-8 overall against the CAA in BracketBusters games...Manhattan leads the all-time series, 2-1....The CAA is 5-7 against the MAAC this season...The Seahawks closed out the non-conference portion of their schedule with a 4-7 record...UNCW is 24-16 lifetime against New York opponents through the years...UNCW is 4-11 away from home this season....UNCW's last non-conference game was a 72-61 decision over Furman at Trask Coliseum on Dec. 30, 2011...UNCW won the rebounding battle, 39-35, with 16 rebounds...The two clubs shot 61 free throws in the game...Keith Rendleman added two blocks, two steals and three assists in the game...Keith Rendleman now has 941 points in 88 career appearances.