QUINCY, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene men's basketball team extended its winning-streak to four games as it defeated Roger Williams 74-45 in the first Commonwealth Coast Conference tilt of the 2012-13 campaign Wednesday evening at the Lahue Physical Education Center.
The victory elevates the Lions to 4-1 on the season and 1-0 in the league, their best start since the 1996-97 season when the "Crusaders" opened the year with seven-straight wins. The loss drops the Hawks to 2-2 overall and 0-1 in conference contests.
Eastern Nazarene was led by Chima Ezeigbo (Roanoke, Va.) with 15 points and eight rebounds. Mike McCoy (Altamonte Springs, Fla.) and Jaylen Owens (Johns Creek, Ga.) each netted 10 points in the win. Max Barbosa (Dorchester, Mass.) contributed nine points and five assists while Brian Hard (Weymouth, Mass.) added eight.
After Roger Williams grabbed an early 5-2 lead, the Lions rattled off 12 unanswered points to claim a 14-5 edge.
The hosts expanded their lead to 16 with 6:10 remaining in the first half as McCoy converted a free throw.
Eastern Nazarene reestablished a 16-point margin with less than 30 seconds left to play in the opening period on a lay-up by Eric Lynch (Alpharetta, Ga.).
The Lions held a 36-20 lead at the break after shooting 38.9% from the field. The Hawks were contained to just 29.2% shooting from the floor in the first half.
McCoy paced the home side with 10 first-half points while Ezeigbo notched seven points and six rebounds.
A trey by Barbosa after 5:43 had elapsed in the second stanza gave Eastern Nazarene a 24-point gap, 51-27.
The Lions extended their lead to 31 with less than eight minutes showing on the clock as Justin Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) nailed a three-pointer.
Eastern Nazarene's largest advantage of the night came in the final three minutes. Alex Jarman (Portsmouth, R.I.) found Dylan Saenz (Port Lavaca, Texas) cutting to the hoop with a pinpoint-accurate pass. Saenz banked a shot off the backboard and through the rim to stretch the margin to 35 points, 72-37.
The Lions capped off the game with a field-goal percentage of 43.5% while the Hawks connected on 34% of their shot attempts in the contest.
Eastern Nazarene will look to capture its fifth-consecutive victory as it visits Wentworth Institute of Technology December 1.