MSMC Blue Knights are Edged By Gators, 68-65

ALBANY – The Mount Saint Mary College Men’s Basketball team suffered its third straight loss Tuesday evening after Russell Sage rallied to a 68-65 victory. Jayden Figueroa posted a double-double for the Knights, including a season-high 20 points.

Tuesday’s defeat drops Mount Saint Mary to 1-4 overall on the season, while the Gators collect their second straight win and move to 2-3 through five contests.

First Half
The Knights trailed by as many as five points over the opening 6:49 of the contest before grabbing a 16-13 lead on a Justin Rivera triple at the midway point of the opening period.
The two sides yo-yoed the lead over the next four minutes before the Knights got back-to-back buckets from Figueroa and Elijah Barnett to move in front 26-20 with 4:36 left before the intermission.

After a Jackson Brown three-pointer moved the Gators to within 26-23, the Knights tallied 10 of the next 12 points to surge in front 36-25 with 1:27 left in the half.

Figueroa scored half of the Mount’s points over the run, capping the spurt with a layup.

Brown ended the half for the Gators with another triple to send the two teams into the intermission with the Mount leading 36-28.

Mount Saint Mary finished the half shooting 42.1-percent overall, but connected on just three of its 12 three-point chances.

Sage was limited to 34.4-percent shooting from the field, including four three-pointers.

Figueroa finished the opening period with 14 points on the strength of 6-for-9 shooting, including a pair of three-pointers.

Brown led the Gators with eight first half points.

Second Half
The Knights quickly spread its lead back to double-figures on a Barnett conversion in the opening half minute of the second half.

The Knights maintained the advantage until the 13:27 mark of the second half when Brown canned another three-pointer to knot the score at 44-44.

The Knights jumped back in front following a bucket from Brenden Graham and a triple from Rivera that got the Knights in front 52-49 with just over 11 minutes left in regulation time.

Sage regained a one-point advantage with 8:55 left to play before the Mount responded with a Chris Yearwood three-pointer that gave them back a 55-53 lead.

After a Connor Cyran conversion with 2:56 left gave the Mount a 63-58 lead, the Gators ripped off the next nine points to grab a 67-63 lead with 26 seconds left in the contest.

A pair of Yearwood free-throws got the Mount to within 67-65 with 16 seconds left, but the Knights went without a field goal after Cyran conversion.

A Brown free-throw with 15 seconds left closed out the scoring in the game and gave the Gators the final three-point advantage.

Mount Saint Mary was able to convert at 41.4-percent from the floor and connected on three triples after halftime.

Sage made two fewer field goals in the second half, but made four triples and held a 16-2 advantage in scoring from the free-throw line.

Figueroa and Barnett each scored six points in the second half for the Knights.

Brown poured in 11 second half points for the Gators.

For The Knights

Figueroa finished with his second double-double of the season, scoring a season-high 20 points to go along with 11 rebounds. He finished 9-for-16 from the floor and added a pair of blocked shots and two steals.

Barnett finished 6-for-12 from the field on his way to 13 points. He closed the night with five rebounds and equaled the team-high with three steals and four assists.

Cyran totaled 10 points to go along with seven rebounds.

Rivera chipped in eight points and joined Barnett with four assists.

For The Gators
Brown totaled a team-high 19 points to go along with five rebounds and three assists.

Evan Kwasniewski came off the bench to score 14 points, going 4-for-8 from the floor and 6-for-6 from the free-throw line.

Noah Girard led all players with four steals.

Ryan Long contributed eight points, five rebounds and three steals to the victory.

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