LEICESTER, Mass. -Sophomore guard Donovin Ford-Hayes (Windsor Locks, Conn.) scored 18 of his 20 points in the first half to lead Becker College to a 85-68 win over Daniel Webster College on Tuesday night in NECC men's basketball action at the Leicester Gym. The Hawks of Becker are now 3-4 on the season and 1-0 in NECC play while the Eagles of Daniel Webster fall to 3-3 and 0-1 in the conference standings.
Ford-Hayes made six of eight three-pointers, all in the first half for the Hawks. Sophomore guard Lee Brockett (Waterbury, Conn.) had 16 points with six rebounds, while sophomore forward Yahmad Rountree (Waterbury, Conn.) contributed 15 points while hauling down eight boards. Junior guard Tyler Roberson (Irvington, N.J.) filled the stat line with 13 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Roberson led Becker after the break with 11 points in the second stanza. The Hawks shot 58.2 percent from the floor and made 13 of 20 three-pointers as they never trailed.
Daniel Webster was led by senior forward John Hickson (Springfield, Mass.) had 20 points with three assists, making six three-pointers of his own. Junior forward Daris Cosby (Columbia, S.C.) finished with 13 points and seven rebounds.
Both teams were lighting it up early, as Daniel Webster made their first five three-pointers. Becker was up to the challenge, making open shots and breaking a 17-17 tie with a 14-4 run, capped off with a three-point play from Brockett to give the hosts a double-digit lead with 8:14 left in the opening period. Every time the Eagles seemed poised to cut the lead, the Hawks seemed to answer with an efficient offense that saw them make eight of their first ten shots from behind the arc, with Ford-Hayes leading the way making six-of-seven, totaling 18 first-half points. The teams went into halftime with Becker leading 48-36, having shot 65.5 percent from the floor overall. Cosby led Daniel Webster in the first half with 11 points.
The Hawks came to play coming out of the locker room as the second period got underway, exploding with a 14-0 run sealed by a pair of free throws from Brockett with 15:30 remaining in the game as Becker went up by 26. The Eagles attempted with respond with a 9-2 rally that included back-to-back three-pointers from Hickson, cutting the lead to 19. The Hawks would look to guard Mike Russell (East Hampton, N.Y.) to right the ship, as the junior transfer hit a three from the corner to swing momentum back to the hosts. Daniel Webster would continue to play hard down the stretch, but the visitors were never able to close the gap.
With the win, Becker has won 36 straight conference games going back to the 2009-2010 season, beginning after an 86-83 loss at Elms College on February 9, 2010. The Hawks have not lost a home conference game since the 2008-2009 campaign.
Up next for Becker, the Hawks host their crosstown rivals from Clark University on Thursday at 8:00 p.m. Daniel Webster travels to Mitchell on Saturday for a 3:00 p.m. matchup.