State basketball roundup (Feb. 24): UMBC men secure second straight 20-victory season

UMBC 83, UMASS LOWELL 75: For the first time in 32 years of NCAA Division I play, the host Retrievers (20-10, 11-4 America East ) posted back-to-back 20-win seasons.

UMBC surged late past the River Hawks (11-17, 5-10) to win.


For the ninth consecutive time this season, the Retrievers posted a victory after suffering a setback and improved to 20-10 overall and 11-4 in America East play. With the win, UMBC is assured of finishing no worse than third place in the final standings, but would have to win at Hartford in the regular season finale on Tuesday to claim second place.

The River Hawks, who will compete in the America East Playoffs for the first time next Saturday, fell to 11-17, 5-10.


Junior forward Joe Sherburne posted his first double-double of the season with 21 points and 10 rebounds.

UMass Lowell hit 12 of its first 18 shots of the second half and took a 65-60 lead with 8:33 remaining. But then, the Retrievers got the big run they needed, outscoring their guests, 17-3, over the next five minutes to take a 77-68 advantage at the 3:34 mark.

Graduate student guard Jairus Lyles put the Retrievers ahead for good at 70-69 with a 3-pointer from the right wing at the 6:28 mark. Junior post Nolan Gerrity hit a pair of layups on feeds from a double-teamed Lyles and senior guard Jourdan Grant (Archbishop Spalding) added to the run with his third 3-pointer of the game from the right corner.

All three Retriever seniors played key roles in the victory. Lyles scored 16 points and added six rebounds and six assists. Grant, who earned the start today and set a new school record by playing in his 123rd career game, scored 9 points and added six rebounds and four assists. Senior guard K.J. Maura scored 11 points and added six assists, as the Retrievers amassed 23 helpers on 31 made field goals.

The Retrievers surged out to a 27-19 lead, hitting of 10 of 17 shots in the first 10 minutes of play. But UMBC committed six turnovers in a span of 5:40 and the River Hawks took advantage, using a 15-3 run to capture a 33-30 lead with 3:47 to play in the period. The Retrievers would score nine of the half's final 11 points and went into the locker room with a 39-35 advantage.

UMBC found the range from behind the arc today, converting 12 of 24 attempts, besting the double-digit mark for treys for the first time in eight games. The River Hawks got much of their damage done inside, hitting 20-of-43 shots inside the arc, but just 5-of-22 from long range.

Sherburne buried 4-of-7 shots from behind the arc and moved past former teammate Rodney Elliott and into 20th position on the all-time scoring list with 1,036 points. He is also just four treys away from becoming the seventh Retriever to convert 200 in a career.

UML senior forward Jahad Thomas matched Sherburne for scoring honors with 21 points and added a game-high 12 rebounds.

Mount St. Mary's 73, Wagner 62: Junior Robinson scored 22 points, Chris Wray blocked a career-best six shots and the host Mount (18-13, 12-6 Northeast Conference ) broke away in the second half to beat the conference champion Seawolves (21-8, 14-4).

The victory secured the second-seed for the Mount in the conference tournament.

Hampton 57, Morgan State 38: The host Pirates (16-14, 1104 Mid Eastern Athletic Conference) won when the game was halted with 13:33 left. The Bears fell to 10-17, 6-8.

Norfolk State 74, UMES 63: Tyler Jones had a game-high 21 points, but the host Hawks (6-24, 2-13 MEAC ) fell to the Spartnas (12-17, 10-4).


Hofstra 91, Towson 86: Justin Wright-Foreman scored 27 points and the host Pride (19-11, 12-6 Colonial Athletic Association) pulled away in the final four minutes to beat the Tigers (18-13, 8-10) in the regular-season finale.

Hofstra has won five of its last six games, and finishes in third place in the conference. Towson entered having secured no better than fifth place.

Johns Hopkins 61, Swarthmore 57: Michael Gardner had 15 points and a second-half surge carried the Blue Jays (22-4) past the host Red Garnet (22-4) in the Centennial Conference Championship.

With the win, Hopkins gets an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III tournament.


Loyola Maryland 58, Navy 40: Izzy Therien scored 17 points and Alexis Gray had 15 points to lead the host Greyhounds (8-20, 6-11 Patriot League ) past the Mids (22-6, 12-5). Loyola Maryland outperformed Navy, 40 to 30 percent shooting from the field.

Wagner 69, Mount St. Mary's 68: Sierra Clark (Archbishop Spalding) made a layup for a 69-64 lead with 3:13 left in the game and the host Seawolves (6-21, 4-12 Northeast Conference) held off the Mount (9-18, 6-10) for the win.

Mount St. Mary's scored twice over the final 3:02.

Juliette Lawless made a layup with 3:02 left and Katrice Dickson made a jumper with 41 seconds left.

Hampton 63, Morgan State 60: The visiting Bears (14-13, 7-7 MEAC) led by 12 to start the fourth quarter, but the Pirates (15-13, 11-4) went on a 27-12 run in a come-from-behind victory. Lexus Spears had 18 points for Morgan State.

Norfolk State 63, UMES 53: Bairesha Gill-Miles scored 12 points in a losing effort as the host Hawks (9-18, 6-9) fell the Spartans (17-9, 10-4).

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