Leicester, Mass. --- Sophomore guard Lee Brockett (Waterbury, Conn.) scored 24 points and shot four-of-eight from behind the arc to lead host Becker College to a 64-58 win over Anna Maria College in non-conference men's basketball action on Tuesday night at the Leicester Gym. It was the home opener for this young Becker team, boasting only two juniors and no seniors. The Hawks of Becker are now 1-3 while the AMCATS of Anna Maria drop to 1-3.
Anna Maria used tough defense and good passing to jump out to a 12-1 lead in the opening minutes, capped off by a three-pointer from junior guard Joseph Barillo (Dania Beach, Fla.). Becker's top returners helped the Hawks chisel away at that deficit, with sophomore guard Donovin Ford-Hayes (Windsor Locks, Conn.) tying the game at 14-14 on a layup off a pass from junior guard Tyler Roberson (Irvington, N.J.). The crosstown rivals went back and forth, the young Hawks' athleticism matched against the AMCATS experience and rebounding. The teams would go into halftime with Anna Maria leading 31-25. Senior forward Anthony Click (Springfield, Mass.) of the AMCATS led all scorers with 12 points and three rebounds in the opening period, while Brockett had eight points to lead the Hawks. Anna Maria enjoyed a 24-16 rebounding edge in the first half.
Becker opened the second half with three straight baskets on a 7-0 run completed with a layup by sophomore forward Yahmad Rountree (Waterbury, Conn.) to give the Hawks a 32-31 lead. Minutes later, Brockett hit back-to-back three-pointers from virtually the same spot to put the Hawks up 43-39, their largest lead of the game up to that point. Down by eight, Anna Maria would rally with a 7-0 run capped off with a layup from senior guard Javier Bristol (Haverhill,Mass.) to pull within 47-46. After another three-pointer from Brockett and an Anna Maria free throw, Roundtree sent the Hawk faithful into a frenzy with a breakaway dunk as Becker went up 53-47 with 7:31 left. It was all part of a 9-3 run by the Hawks. Anna Maria pulled to within three with 1:09 remaining on a pair of free throws by Click, but that was as close the AMCATS would get as Roundtree came up with a huge steal at midcourt and scored on a layup seconds later.
Three-point shooting in the second half was critical, as Becker shot eight of 17 from behind the arc (42.4 percent) against one of 13 shooting for Anna Maria (7.7 percent).
16 of Brockett's 24 points came in the second half, as he shot 50 percent from the floor for the game while chipping in five rebounds. Roberson contributed 16 points and pulled down six rebounds. Roundtree had a team-high ten boards with 11 points and two steals, coming up with several clutch plays. Ford-Hayes added eight points while junior guard Mike Russell (East Hampton, N.Y.) added five assists with two steals.
Bristol was a force for Anna Maria, particularly in the second period, as the senior ended the night with 19 points and 14 rebounds. Click contributed 17 points with six boards and three assists, while freshman guard Brad Peterson (North Kingstown, R.I.) added six points with 11 rebounds. Barillo scored eight points off the bench.
Up next for Becker, the Hawks host Fitchburg State University on Thursday in a 7:00 p.m. game. Anna Maria travels to Emerson College on Saturday, December 1st for a 1:00 p.m. contest.