NEWBURGH – The Mount Saint Mary College Men’s Basketball suffered its fifth straight defeat to open the season in heartbreaking fashion following a 73-67 overtime loss to Sage Tuesday evening. Chris Yearwood tallied a game-high 20 points, reaching the 20-point mark for the third straight contest.
Tuesday’s loss drops Mount Saint Mary to 0-5 overall on the season while Sage improves to 5-1. The Mount now holds an 11-6 record against the Gators in the last 17 meetings in the series.
Mount Saint Mary used an 11-0 run in the early going on Tuesday to pull in front 15-9 on a Jayden Figueroa three-pointer with 12:56 left in the opening period.
The Mount went 5-for-8 from the floor over the 3:18 stretch with Zack Swaby leading four different scorers with four points.
The Mount maintained the lead until the 2:59 mark of the first half when a pair of Jason Geronimo free-throws pushed the Gators in front 25-24.
The Knights quickly regained the lead on a Ryan Graham three-pointer that pushed them in front 27-25.
Sage closed the period with the final four points, a lay-up from Jalon Borders and a Todd Williamson jumper, to pull in front 29-27 after 20 minutes of action.
Mount Saint Mary shot 38.5-percent prior to halftime and went 4-for-9 from three-point range.
Sage converted at 30.8-percent in the first half and knocked down just one of its five three-point attempts.
Graham led all scorers at the break with eight points for the Knights.
Noah Girard came off the bench to pace Sage with seven points.
A spirited second half saw the Knights fall behind by five in the early going following a three-point play from Geronimo just under three minutes into the half.
Mount Saint Mary grabbed its first lead of the half on a Yearwood triple with 15:07 left in regulation to push the Knights in front 37-36.
Following the Yearwood three-pointer, the final 15 minutes would feature five ties and four lead changes.
Mount Saint Mary moved in front 44-40 on a Graham conversion in the paint with 11:59 left in the period.
Sage answered with a 13-2 stretch that pushed it in front 53-46 on a Charles David dunk with just shy of six minutes left in the half.
The Gators held the lead until the 2:33 mark when Graham canned a three-pointer to push the Knights in front 57-55.
The Mount’s lead grew to five points twice in the final 1:42, but a Geronimo layup with 14 seconds left and a three-pointer off an offensive rebound from Tyler Mitchell with five seconds left in regulation knotted things up at 62-62 following regulation.
Yearwood finished the half with 13 points, going 4-for-5 from the floor and 3-for-4 from behind the arc.
Mount Saint Mary shot an even 50-percent from the field in the second half and went 7-for-12 from three-point range.
Sage shot just 35.7-percent and made just the one three-pointer in the second, but outscored the Knights 12-4 from the free-throw line and grabbed nine offensive rebounds leading to an 18-6 edge in second chance scoring in the half.
Sage scored the first six points of the extra period to grab the lead for good in the game.
Yearwood buried a three-pointer with 1:18 left in the frame to cut the Knights’ deficit to 68-65, but the Gators knocked in four free-throws and got another triple from Mitchell to hold off the Mount.
Sage made three of their five field goal attempts in the extra session and went a perfect 4-for-4 from the free-throw line.
Mount Saint Mary went 1-for-6 from the floor in overtime.
For The Knights
Yearwood finished with an even 20 points to move his scoring average to 16.8 on the season through five games. He closed out the night with 7-for-14 from the floor and 4-for-7 from three-point range. He added three rebounds, an assist, a block and a steal.
Graham reached double-figures in scoring for the fourth time in five games with 18 points. He closed a strong night with six rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal.
Connor Cyran closed the night with 10 points, adding a team-high seven rebounds, two blocks and two steals.
Mike Dedda paced the Mount with three assists.
Figueroa chipped in five points, six rebounds and a trio of blocked shots.
For The Gators
Geronimo led Sage with 15 points and closed a double-double with a game-high 13 rebounds while adding five steals.
Borders added 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
Mitchell closed the night with 12 points and seven caroms and connected on two of the team’s three-pointers in the game.
Davis and Willamson each tallied 10 points for the Gators.
Mount Saint Mary opens Skyline Conference play on December 1 when it welcomes USMMA to the Kaplan Center.