BOSTON, MA - Sophomore forward Jauch Green (Hartford, CT) tallied a team-high 19 points, while senior forward Tre'Von Perry (Waterbury, CT) chipped in with 17 to lead the Western men's basketball team to a 79-77 LEC victory at UMass-Boston on Saturday afternoon. Sophomore forward Aaron Samuel (Stratford, CT) and rookie guard Evan Curtin (Portland, CT) also notched double figures for the Colonials, finishing with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
The hosts burst out the gate strong to seize an early 9-4 lead. However, Western quickly countered with a 12-4 outburst ignited by a Perry midrange jumper to capture a 16-13 advantage. After regaining the lead, Beacon senior forward Sam Freeman (Boston, MA) - who finished with a game-high 20 points and 13 rebounds - drained a jump shot to put the hosts ahead 27-20 with 7:21 remaining before halftime. The Colonials rallied to take a 37-34 lead when Green converted a three-point play. Shortly thereafter, Curtin drilled a pair of free throws before UMass-Boston rookie guard Alex Sanchez (Salem, MA) hit a layup with five seconds left to close the gap to 41-37 at the break.
The visitors extended the lead to 67-62 when Green hit a layup after a steal from junior guard Bobby Bynum (New Haven, CT) with 7:47 remaining. Senior guard Careem Kirksey (Dorchester, MA) nailed a three-pointer then connected on the second of two from the line, giving the Beacons a 77-76 lead with 41 ticks left on the clock. After a Western timeout, Green tickled the twine to put the Colonials back on top, 78-77, with 12 seconds left. The Beacons missed a shot with five seconds remaining, Perry - who also recorded a game-high five blocks - grabbed the board and calmly sank a free throw to round the scoring out at 79-77.
With the win, Western avenged an earlier loss to the Beacons this season, improving to 11-5 overall and 3-4 in league play, while UMass-Boston dropped to 10-7 and 3-4. "I was very pleased with our effort today. We were invested. It was a terrific game against two equally matched teams. We just happened to make one more play than them," said Colonials head coach Jason Harlow after the victory.
Western returns to action at LEC nemesis Rhode Island College on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.