POUGHKEEPSIE – Junior Zach Bromfeld matched his season-high 20 points, but it was not enough as Vassar fell 66-74 to Skidmore in Liberty League play on Wednesday evening. With the loss, Vassar now stands at 2-5 overall and 0-3 in the conference. Skidmore now moves to 3-4 and 2-1 in the Liberty League.
The Brewer started strong with Bromfeld scoring Vassar’s opening four points. First-year Avni Mustafaj split a pair of free throws, and then junior Lance Tebay sank a triple in his return to action. Now at 8-6, Skidmore’s Pat Gallagher responded with a three of his own to start a 7-2 Thoroughbreds run to take a 13-10 lead. Vassar tied it up soon after when Ethan Ellis dished the ball to Josh Brownridge for the open three-pointer.
Skidmore pushed the pass midway through the half, taking a 30-19 lead following a Tautvydas Kupstas trey at 6:18. Freshman Kevin McAuliffe followed by sinking two threes in under 30 seconds to cut the lead to five. Bromfeld and Mustafaj tacked on two more layups to make it 32-34 at the half.
In the second, Bromfeld opened again with another quick layup to tie, but a layup by Kupstas gave the Thoroughbreds a lead they would not relinquish right after. The game remained within ten points for the rest of the night, and Vassar would go on to even the score three times. At 12:57, Bromfeld picked up Jack Rothenberg beyond the arc for the triple. That began a 12-3 Brewers’ run until they tied it 51-51 at 9:52. Following some back-and-forth baskets, the game went 55-55 before two unanswered Skidmore three-pointers pushed their lead. In the final minute, the Thoroughbreds took their largest lead at 11 before holding on to the victory.
Bromfeld shot 9-of-17 and recorded a block and a steal. McAuliffe scored 12 points behind 4-of-5 three-point shootings, while Mustafaj had 11. Rothenberg finished with seven points, four rebounds, three assists, and two steals. Freshman Joey Sacco dished out a career-best five assists.
Kupstas lead Skidmore with 19 points, while Ryan Murunge added 12 points and ten rebounds.
Vassar has a short break before they return to action on Dec. 28 for the CUNYAC vs. Cancer Tournament held at Lehman College. The Brewers face McDaniel at 6 p.m. in the opening round.