BOSTON – The Suffolk men's basketball team put a complete game together in front of its home crowd as the Rams outlasted Norwich, 61-52, Wednesday night inside Regan Gymnasium for the blue and gold's first GNAC victory of the season.
SCORE: Suffolk 61, Norwich 52
RECORDS: Suffolk (2-6, 1-1 GNAC) | Norwich (3-4, 1-1 GNAC)
HOW IT HAPPENED
It took 1:15 to break open the scoring and Norwich's Ryan Fitzgerald was the one to do so with a layup. From there, a George Grillakis triple was answered by a Cadets' jump shot before the scoring went silent for 3:17.
Jim Djema broke the silence with a long ball, but Suffolk's first lead was shortlived as Norwich responded on its next possession to lock things at 6-all. Thanks to a pair of freebies from Cameron Powers the Rams gained a four point lead, 12-8, before another scoring lull ensued.
After a scoreless 2:42, the Cadets put in back-to-back hoops to retake the edge, 13-11. A pull-up jumper by Kevin Querusio shut Norwich's run down and the score would see-saw from there.
Treys from Jonathan Eng sandwiched a set of free throws from the Cadets to keep Suffolk in front by three with just over five minutes to play before half time.
Down the stretch, Suffolk continued the shooting show Eng starting with jumpers from Djema and Steven DiPrizio to send the Rams into the locker room ahead by six, 29-23.
Suffolk continued to click out of the intermission as it outscored the visitors 7-4 to jump ahead 36-29. Out of the break the teams traded hoops before the Rams' rookie lit up from beyond the arc. Powers sandwiched triples around Eng's third of the night to make it a 47-36 Suffolk game.
Norwich called another timeout, but it did not break up the Rams' run as the hosts would maintain the double digit advantage with just under four minutes remaining in the contest. The Cadets made a last ditch effort with a 5-2 spurt to pull within seven, but would not come any closer as Eng secured Suffolk's 61-52 victory with two free throws.
- Eng was a dominant presence for the Rams as the freshman reserve threw down a gaem-high 15 points on a 5-for-7 performance for the floor, including a 3-of-4 showing behind the arc.
- Djema joined Eng in double figures with 11 thanks to 4-of-7 field goal connection rate and a 3-for-6 effort from 3-point land.
- DiPrizio shined on the glass for the Rams' grabbing a game-best 13, including 12 on the defensive end. The sophomore forward was one point shy of his third double-double with a nine-point effort.
- Quinn McCartney helped in Suffolk's 34-board effort with seven to go along with four points.
- The Rams outrebounded the Cadets, 34-33, and relied heavily on its bench with Suffolk's reserves outscoring Norwich's bench, 32-18.
- After a sluggish first 20 minutes, Suffolk shined from the floor in the second (48.0%) to finish the night with a 43.1 connection rate (22-51) from the field, 42.9 percent from 3-point range (9-21) and 80.0 percent from the line (8-10).
Suffolk hits the road for the remainder of its 2016 schedule as the Rams visit Albertus Magnus Saturday, Dec. 10 for a 1 p.m. matchup, before making the trip across town to UMass Boston Tuesday, Dec. 13 for a 7 p.m. non-conference contest.