JJs Push Kean Past Rutgers-Camden, 71-63

Union, N.J. (1/19/11) – Senior Jonathan Jones and freshman J.J. Hladik scored a combined 34 points to lead the Kean University men’s basketball team over visiting Rutgers-Camden, 71-63, Wednesday night in NJAC action.

The Cougars improve to 13-5 overall and 5-1 in the New Jersey Athletic Conference.  Their 13 wins are the most in a season since 2006-07.  The loss drops Rutgers-Camden to 3-13 overall and 1-6 in conference play.

It was a tightly played first half where Kean led by no more than six points at any given time.  After being tied at 16-all, the Cougars used back-to-back treys  by rookies Kenny Pace and Hladik to take a 24-18 lead.  Kean went into the break with a slim 30-27 edge.  Sophomore Diego Gutierrez and Hladik (pictured left) led KU with six points apiece.  Jones added five points and five rebounds.  Camden’s Jared Meredith had seven points in the first 20 minutes of action.

It was Rutgers-Camden’s turn early in the second half as they used a 13-0 run over a six minute span to take a 40-32 lead.  Freshman Jason Richardson provided five points in the run.  The Cougars then took over and used a 9-0 run to take the lead at 41-40 with 10:43 remaining.  Jones and Gutierrez contributed all the points in the span.  Hladik then used three consecutive baskets from behind the arc to push Kean’s lead out to 10.  The Cougars would hold on to the lead from there, never trailing by more than six in the final seconds.

Jones finished with a double-double 19 points and 15 rebounds while Hladik added 15.  Gutierrez (pictured right) provided 14 points and five assists.  Sophomore Ali Noorzad had a team-high 14 points for the Scarlet Raptors.

Kean returns to NJAC action on Saturday when they host Ramapo College at 3 p.m.