Stevens Edges Men's Basketball, 75-70

UNION, N.J. (1/7/13) – Senior Sheldon Jones scored 18 points to lead four players in double digits, as Stevens Institute of Technology defeated the Kean University men's basketball team, 75-70, on Monday night.

Junior Kyle Latorre and junior Michael Burton (pictured left) each scored 17 points to pace the Cougars (5-8).

It was a close first half, featuring six ties and no team leading by more than six. Latorre poured 12 of his 17 points during the first stanza while also chipping with six rebounds. A jumper with 40 seconds left in the half by freshman Evan Klimchak gave the Ducks (9-1) a 40-36 halftime advantage.

Both teams seemed to barely miss in the first 20 minutes as Stevens shot 57.1% while the Cougars countered at 52%.

The Ducks opened up a 12 point lead with 16:41 remaining in the second half on a jumper from Jones. But the Cougars battled back with a 17-4 run and took a one point lead with just over eight minutes to play on the backend of a one-and-one from junior Ryan Duffy.  Senior Mike Shaughnessy provided six points in the span. 

The lead would be the last for Kean as the Ducks, led by 10 second half points from Jones and sophomore Patrick Sabatino, were able to stretch the lead to 11 with just over three minutes remaining. Senior Russ Thompson gave Stevens a 72-61 advantage with a trey.  The Cougars had a chance to tie the game at 73 in the waning seconds, but a three pointer was blocked, and Thompson sunk two free throws to seal the win for the Ducks.

Rookie Tommy Soulias recorded 12 points in the loss while Latorre added nine rebounds.  Thompson finished with 13 points while junior Matt Skrelja tallied 14 points for the Ducks.

The Cougars return to action Wednesday, January 9th, as they take on NJAC foe Rutgers-Newark at 8 p.m. The Ducks return home to Hoboken to take on Alfred University on Friday, January 11th.