BRONX, N.Y. (Jan. 8, 2018) – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's basketball team lost its Skyline Conference road contest up at SUNY Maritime on Monday night, 86-81, at the Privateers' Riesenberg Gymnasium. In defeat, the Mariners fall to 5-6 (3-4 Skyline), while Maritime improves to 6-6 (3-5 Skyline).
A photo gallery of the game is available at this link.
A pair of freshmen both had career-high 20-plus point efforts, as James Walsh (Huntington, N.Y.) drained 25 points and Jesse Neloms (Memphis, Tenn.) added 20. Junior David Washington (Frisco, Texas) posted a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while senior Christian Wittendorf (Granger, Ind.) contributed nine points off the bench.
Sophomore Eric Sobocinski (Southampton, N.J.) and freshman Seth Barnes (Chillicothe, Ohio) both chipped in with six points apiece, while sophomore Connor Green (Flower Mound, Texas) registered three points and a game-high seven assists and senior Robbie Kennedy (Spring Lake, N.J.) rounded out the USMMA scorers with two points.
The hosts jumped out to a 13-7 lead in the first five minutes thanks in part to three 3-pointers. The Mariners fought back to within one point on three different occasions in the next 10 minutes before finally tying the score up at 31-31 at 4:58 of the first. The Privateers went back ahead by four over a minute later before Merchant Marine scored four-straight to tie the score up at 37-37, however Maritime senior Patrick MacDonald ended the scoring in the half with four free throws in the final two minutes and SUNY went into the locker room with a 41-37 advantage.
After falling behind by as many as seven, 45-38, in the first two-plus minutes, the Mariners went on a 9-2 run to tie the score up at 47 at 15:29. The two teams traded baskets over the next minute, but the Privateers went ahead for good at 14:10 of the second on a three-pointer. The hosts' advantage hit nine points, 68-59, at 8:49 and the Mariners only came as close as five points on three different occasions, with the Privateer lead reaching double-digits in the final 30 seconds before a 6-1 run by USMMA, on a pair of three-pointers, ended the scoring.
MacDonald led all players in the game, recording a double-double for Maritime with 30 points and 17 rebounds. Senior John Liccese and sophomore Michael Walker both added 15 points in the Privateers' victory.
The Mariners return to action on Wednesday night, Jan. 10, when they travel to take on St. Joseph's-L.I. as part of a road Skyline doubleheader with the women's team. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. at the Golden Eagles' Danzi Athletic Center. Live stats will be available for the game and can be accessed by following this link.
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