QUINCY, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene College men's basketball team surged past Lesley 87-57 Saturday afternoon at the Lahue Physical Education Center.
The Lions elevate to 12-10 on the season and 9-4 in the New England Collegiate Conference with the win. The Lynx slide to 2-18 overall and 1-11 in league action with the outcome.
Josh Rice (Hanson, Mass.) poured in 20 points to lead the squad and hauled in five boards. Jacob Waldroop (Newland, N.C.) finished with 12 points, nine rebounds, four steals, three assists, and a pair of blocks. David Lopez (Miami, Fla.) chipped in with 10 points off the bench while Garrett Crandell (Bristol, Tenn.) tallied nine.
The hosts got out to a stellar start with a 12-0 run to open the game.
The visitors trimmed the margin to 14-8 with 12:11 to go in the first half on a trey by Treyvon Trent.
Eastern Nazarene reclaimed a double-figure lead on a three-ball by Waldroop with 4:23 to go in the opening frame, 27-17.
Lesley pulled to within four points, 29-25, as Chase Howard knocked down a three-pointer from the corner with 2:13 to go in the half.
The Lions carried a 34-28 advantage into the halftime intermission after shooting 53.8% from the floor and 5-for-9 from three-point range in the first half. The Lynx were limited to a field-goal percentage of 34.6% in the opening 20 minutes of action to go with a 35.7% success rate from behind the arc.
Rice poured in 13 first-half points to lead the home side while Waldroop chipped in with six points and five boards.
Eastern Nazarene stretched its advantage to 41-31 just three minutes into the second stanza on a layup by Ricky Shearman (Acworth, Ga.).
Lesley cut the gap to 41-36 with 16:25 left to play on a basket by Trent.
The Lions tallied nine-unanswered points to widen the margin to 60-44 with 9:03 remaining in regulation.
The hosts maintained a double-digit lead throughout the remainder of the game and extended their advantage to 31 in the waning seconds as Luke Dagley (Weymouth, Mass.) splashed a three-pointer from the left corner.
The Lions concluded the contest with a field-goal percentage of 57.1% to go with a 43.8% clip from downtown. The Lynx shot 33.3% from the floor and 34.5% from three-point distance on the afternoon.
Looking ahead, Eastern Nazarene hits the road to take on Newbury February 9.