Men’s Basketball Edges Roger Williams in Tuesday Night Thriller, 64-61

Men’s Basketball Edges Roger Williams in Tuesday Night Thriller, 64-61

BRISTOL, R.I.- The Eastern Nazarene College men's basketball team rallied from 12 points down at halftime to top Roger Williams 64-61 on the road Tuesday evening.

The Lions improve to 11-5 on the season and 5-4 in the Commonwealth Coast Conference with the win. The Hawks flutter to 7-9 overall and 5-4 in league play with the result.

Lequan Gomes (Fairfield, Calif.) notched a game-high 17 points while adding three rebounds, two steals and two blocks. Jaylen Owens (Johns Creek, Ga.) finished with 13 points and three steals on the night. Justin Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) posted 11 points and five boards while David Eddings (Endicott, N.Y.) contributed with eight rebounds and seven points off the bench.

Roger Williams opened up a quick 7-1 gap less than four minutes into the contest.

A six-point surge by Eastern Nazarene knotted the score at 9-9 with 13:36 on the clock.

The Lions seized their first lead of the game with 13:09 left to play as Justin Wagner buried a three-pointer, 12-9.

The Hawks grabbed an eight-point edge after two treys and a pair of free throws by Jaylen Jennings with 9:17 left to play in the first half, 23-15.

The home side pushed its lead to 16 points with 4:25 to go in the period on a triple by Josh McCourt, 36-20.

After a jumper by Anthony Petrilli (Woodland Hills, Calif.) late in the first frame, Eastern Nazarene trailed Roger Williams 40-28 at the halftime recess.

The Lions held a field-goal percentage of 36.7% to go with 1-of-7 shooting from the perimeter at the midway point of the game. The Hawks shot a red-hot 62.5% from the floor and 66.7% from behind the arc through 20 minutes of action.

Owens paced the visitors with eight points and a pair of steals at the break. Gomes pitched in with seven points while Eddings recorded five points and five boards.

The Lions chalked up the first 13 points of the second half while preventing the Hawks from getting on the scoreboard for over six minutes of play. The 13-point swing negated Roger Williams' 12-point halftime advantage and propelled Eastern Nazarene into the lead 41-40. Justin Wagner knocked down a three-pointer to push the visitors ahead by one with 13:55 left to play.

The Hawks halted their scoreless streak with 13:29 on the clock as Connor O'Brien tossed in a layup.

The two teams swapped the next nine baskets as the hosts reclaimed a one-point edge 53-52 with 7:27 to go in regulation.

Eastern Nazarene regained a 54-53 lead with under seven minutes left to play on a rare layup by Justin Wagner.

Roger Williams cut the gap to 62-61 with 37 seconds remaining as Trevor Fahmy converted a pair of free throws.

Owens sealed the Lions' fifth-straight victory over the Hawks with two makes from the charity stripe with six ticks on the clock.

Eastern Nazarene shot 37.3% from the floor and 27.3% from long range. Roger Williams finished with a field-goal percentage of 53.7% on the evening while connecting on 6-of-14 three-point attempts.

Jennings and O'Brien paced the Hawks with 12 points each while McCourt chipped in with 10 points.

Up next, Eastern Nazarene will battle Endicott January 23 at the Lahue Physical Education Center.