MILTON, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene men's basketball team return to league action Saturday afternoon, claiming an 83-67 win at Curry.
The Lions improve to 8-1 on the season and 2-1 in the Commonwealth Coast Conference with the victory. The Colonels fall to 2-6 overall and 1-2 in conference play with the loss.
Jaylen Owens (Johns Creek, Ga.) paced the visitors with 20 points and six assists. Eric Lynch (Alpharetta, Ga.) finished with 17 points and four boards. Alex Jarman (Portsmouth, R.I.) notched 15 points, six rebounds and a pair of blocks. Justin Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) poured in nine points on 3-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc while Jeremy Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) added six.
Curry opened the contest with five unanswered points before Eastern Nazarene got on the board with 17:16 left in the half on a free throw by Eric Lynch.
The Lions claimed their first lead of the day with 10:54 to go in the first period as Brian Hard (Weymouth, Mass.) banked in a lay-up, 17-16.
The Colonels regained a two-point edge, 28-26, with 5:33 remaining in the opening half on a Rodney Beldo lay-in.
Eastern Nazarene responded with a 13-2 run to close out the first stanza. Zach Tonello (Bourne, Mass.) capped off the stretch with a buzzer-beating trey to give the Lions a 39-30 halftime lead.
Owens and Justin Wagner each registered nine points in the opening frame while Eric Lynch netted seven.
The visitors drained 43.3% of their shot attempts in the first half, including 6-of-10 from three-point range. The home side shot 48.1% from the field in the opening 20 minutes of play while also being limited to 3-of-8 shooting from behind the arc.
Curry cut the deficit to nine with 17:39 left to play as Paul Preziosi knocked down a jumper, 46-37.
Eastern Nazarene widened the gap to 52-37 after Eric Lynch notched back-to-back lay-ups with 16:25 on the clock.
A 9-2 run by the Lions stretched the advantage to 17 with 12:36 remaining, 61-44.
The Colonels narrowed the margin to six with 7:17 to go following eight consecutive points, 63-57.
The Lions restored their lead to 13 points with 4:36 left to play as David Eddings (Endicott, N.Y.) completed a three-point play with a made free throw, 70-57.
Eastern Nazarene sealed the victory with six converted free throws in the final 1:10.
The Lions finished the contest with a field-goal percentage of 45.8% while also connecting on 50% of their three-point attempts. The Colonels shot 43.5% from the floor on the afternoon and 42.9% from long distance.
Up next, Eastern Nazarene returns to Lahue Physical Education Center to host Roger Williams January 7.