It didn’t come easy, however the Beavers’ last second defensive stand earned them their first conference win of the season at Medgar Evers.
It wasn’t a perfect win, but it’s a much needed win for CCNY.
The Men’s Basketball team earned their first conference win of the season, holding off Medgar Evers 65-64 in the final seconds.
“We’ve been knocking on the door and nobody’s been home,” CCNY head coach Tom Green said about the City’s losing trend prior to Friday night’s win. The Beavers lost six of their last seven games going into their game against the Cougars, a trend that City hopes doesn’t repeat itself for the rest of the season.
With a chance to win the game down 65-64, MEC missed two shots by Kyle Sierra, the first a layup, the second a jumper at the buzzer that just missed as the horn sounded.
“They were playing not to lose and we were playing to win,” Green said.
City’s first conference win of the season saw the Beavers open the game on a 17-7 run from the opening tipoff, followed by the Cougars rallying back on a 16-5 run right after, tying the game at 22 on Mark Hudson’s jumper with 6:10 left in the first, then the 23-22 lead on Zavier Coston’s free throw.
Despite another night that saw the CCNY offense struggle, shooting just 28.4 percent on the night, the Beavers rallied back in the second half, going on a 15-4 run, tying the game at 59 on David Solano’s three-pointer with 3:01 left. MEC responded with a three of their own by Reynaldo Eloy on the following possession to retake the lead 62-59.
The Beavers rallied one more time, ending the game on a 6-2 run, regaining the lead on a jumper and two free throws by Khalil Hamer and a layup by Anthony Lewis.
“Our guys played really good defenses when it counted in the last three minutes of the game and just hung in there,” Green said about the end of the game.
Both Hamer and Lewis led the Beavers in scoring Friday night with Hamer scoring a game-high 22 and Lewis scoring 20 points.
“The win is big,” Lewis said after the game. “To be tied up for the eighth spot and to pull that out and to make sure that they’re at the bottom of the totem pole, it’s definitely a big win.”
“We just told ourselves mentally that we cannot lose to them,” Manfred Cadet said. Cadet scored five points and had five assists and three rebounds on the night.
The win pushes City to 5-8 overall in the regular season and 1-6 in the CUNYAC and puts them in lone possession of the eighth and final playoff seed with MEC falling to 0-6 in the CUNYAC following the loss.
“It’s a really big win,” Cadet mentioned. “It brings our confidence back for the conference. We just needed one conference win to get us going.”