LOWELL, Mass. – Senior Obadiah Noel (Frederick, Md.) tallied 30 points in a 73-58 loss for the UMass Lowell men’s basketball team (2-5, 1-2 AE) at Stony Brook (5-4, 3-0 AE) on Sunday to open a two-game series.
“Credit to Stony Brook,” said Head Coach Pat Duquette. “They played better and harder than we did today right from the start. Defensively, we never made them feel uncomfortable. And our offense struggled. We need a much more balanced attack on offense in order to win a game against a good team on the road in this league.”
Noel shot 68.8% (11-16) from the floor, as the lone River Hawk in double figures in his 100th career outing. Graduate student Salif Boudie (Bamako, Mali) chipped in with eight points, while redshirt-sophomore Bryce Daley led the squad with seven rebounds and three assists.
Although the Seawolves’ offense came out firing, the River Hawks kept the difference to just a bucket in the early minutes, including a triple from Noel that put his squad within one. However, the home team used a 16-3 run to pull away, 24-10, with 11:06 remaining in the first half.
Stony Brook maintained a double-digit buffer until Noel hit a jumper off a good pass from sophomore Ron Mitchell (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Daley followed with a three, cutting the difference to 28-20 at 5:49. Noel and sophomore Connor Withers (Manassas, Va.) then combined for all nine of the River Hawks’ points in the waning minutes of the period, but strong shooting from beyond the arc helped SBU take a 43-29 advantage into the break.
UMass Lowell went on the offensive to start the second half thanks to a long-range jumper from junior Allin Blunt (Bowie, Md.) and consecutive buckets from Boudie that made the score 45-36. The visitors were back within nine once more, although Stony Brook responded with 10 unanswered points to stretch the margin to 59-40 with 10:29 left to play.
Sophomore Kalil Thomas (New Orleans, La.) entered the game and went coast-to-coast for two at the five-minute mark and Noel followed with the team’s final eight points in the 73-58 setback.
The two squads are right back at it tomorrow afternoon, as UMass Lowell and Stony Brook square off at 1 p.m. on Monday, December 28 to wrap up the series.
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