Fighting Saints fall 69-58 in thrilling game against Knights

Fighting Saints fall 69-58 in thrilling game against Knights

Chuck Isaac scored 17 points in the second half of play and Quadarius Spence pulled down 10 rebounds, but College of St. Joseph's men's basketball team lost 69-58 in a battle against Vermont Technical College on Wednesday night.

Daniel Gill got the scoring going when he converted a layup off an offensive rebound for VTC. One minute later, Spence collected his first offensive rebound of the night and dished the ball off to CSJ's Tyreke Woodard for a layup, tying the game at 2.

Turnovers led to Woodard getting back on the scoreboard again a minute later when he sank a three pointer off a pass from Jared Brown. CSJ extended their lead to six when Mickalous Snowden swished a three pointer from the left side of the court.  VTC's Titus Smith score his first points of the game by way of two free throws shortly after CSJ extended their lead.

After a CSJ turnover, Cameron Carter brought the Knights within two points of the Saints when he shot 2-2 from the foul line a minutes later. Gill tied the game at 8 with a layup shortly after. Isaac collected a pass from Woodard on the Saints' next possession and took the ball to the basket, getting fouled in the process. He went 1-2 from the foul line to put CSJ ahead 9-8.

Smith gave VTC their first lead since the opening minute of the contest by way of a layup with 13:26 on the lock. The Knights capitalized on the momentum Smith created, scoring three straight layups to take a 16-9 lead. Smith then capped the VTC run with a three pointer before Isaac sank a jump shot for CSJ to make the score 19-11.

By the time there was five minutes to play in the half VTC had built a 28-17 lead, but Kadeem Riddick hit a three to chip away at CSJ's deficit. VTC failed to convert on their next possession, and Spence took advantage on CSJ's offensive end. After a missed free throw by the Saints, Spence grabbed the offensive rebound and scored a layup to make it a 28-22 game.

After a VTC layup, Spence knocked down a jump shot off of a pass from Isaac. With three minutes on the clock, Isaac stole the ball and converted a layup to bring CSJ within four points of the Knights, 30-26. Tyrone Hilson went 1-2 from the free throw line for VTC and Deron Walter scored a layup for CSJ to make the game 31-28 at halftime.

VTC went on a 12-2 run in the first five minutes of the second half, with Isaac accounting for CSJ's lone basket. He then shot 2-2 from the foul line to make it an eight-point game. When Smith netted a three pointer at the 12:27 mark, the Knights led by double digits once again - 48-37. Darrien White dished off a pass to Spence for a layup on CSJ's next possession to immediately cut the Knights' advantage.

With 9:23 remaining in the game, Isaac ran ahead of white for a fast break. White advanced the ball to him, and Isaac scored a layup while being fouled by VTC's Jeremy Franklin to have the opportunity for a three point play for the Fighting Saints. Isaac netted his free throw, and the Saints trailed 53-43 with 9:17 to play. CSJ went on a 5-0 run from there and came within five points of the Knights with seven minutes to go in the game.

VTC's Smith halted the Fighting Saints run with his third three pointer of the game. On the other end of the court Isaac netted anther jump shot to keep CSJ in the game, making the score 56-50. Gill scored four straight points for the Knights and Carter converted a foul shot to give VTC a 61-50 lead with four minutes to play.

Isaac collected a pass from Snowden with two minutes to play and knocked down a three pointer, making the game 63-55. With 41 seconds to play, Spence converted an offensive rebound to a jump shot to make the score 65-58. CSJ's last-chance attempts at three pointers were off the mark and VTC's Carter netted four points in the final seconds to cap the game at 69-58.

Smith scored a game-high 27 points for the Knights and Gill notched 15 points and 12 rebounds. Carter scored 17 points for VTC.

Isaac led CSJ with 22 points and also recorded four rebounds. Spence finished with 10 points and a game-high 15 rebounds, including nine offensive rebounds. He also had four blocks, two steals and an assists. Woodard netted eight points and contributed three rebounds and two steals and Darrien White finished with a game-high five assists.

The Fighting Saints play next on Jan. 25 at Paul Smith's College at 7 p.m.