After slow start, Nor'easters shift into high gear for 89-78 victory against Seahawks

Rodney Morton (Photo by Rob McGuinness)
Rodney Morton (Photo by Rob McGuinness)
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University of New England 89, Salve Regina 78
Rodgers Rec. Ctr. - Newport, R.I.
Saturday, January 6, 2018

NEWPORT, R.I. - 15 different players scored for the University of New England, led by seniors Gavin Dibble (Greenport, N.Y.) and Drew Coveney (Londonderry, N.H.), with 16 and 11 points, respectively, as the Nor'easters defeated Salve Regina University, 89-78, in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) men's basketball action at the Rodgers Recreation Center. The Seahawks, who suffered their first home loss in six games this season, were led by a game-high 29 points from senior Rodney Morton (Malden, Mass.). 

Series and Streaks
The Seahawks lead the all-time series, 14-13, but the Nor'easters have won six of the last seven meetings. The teams split last year's meetings with each winning on its own home court. Salve Regina had won its first five home games of 2017-18.

Three Stars of the Game

  1. Seahawk senior Rodney Morton (Malden, Mass.) has moved up to 16th all-time on the school's scoring list (1,089 career points) with 29 points today.
  2. Nor'easter senior Gavin Dibble (Greenport, N.Y.) led his team with 16 points off the bench on four-of-six from the floor and six-of-six from the free-throw line.
  3. The rest of the Nor'easter bench - in addition to Dibble, the non-starters for University of New England scored 66 of the team's 89 points.

Key Stats of the Game
Salve Regina misfired on 15 free throws, including the front end of several one and a bonus (17-for-32 from the line - 53.1%). The Nor'easter bench scores 66 points.

Turning Point
The game featured 10 ties and seven lead changes, but the biggest turning point may have come early after Salve Regina built a 13-point lead in the first five minutes following a 3-pointer from Tyler Benjamin (Fitchburg, Mass.), 15-2. It took another six and a half minutes before the Nor'easters tied the score, 21-21, with 8:20 remaining in the first half on a 3-pointer from Ryan Beatty (Rochester, Mass.). After trailing by four at the half (40-36), Salve Regina tied the score (49-49) on a layup from Kevin Kelly (Valhalla, N.Y.) at the 15:05 mark. Beatty's second trey of the game started an 18-8 run for the Nor'easters as they built their first double-digit advantage. A layup from Kelly at 6:41 brought the Seahawks as close as four points (68-64) before the Nor'easters outscored the Seahawks, 21-14, in the final six and a half minutes.

Quick Hits

  • University of New England connected on 13 3-pointers, but no Nor'easter had more than two (10 different visitors hit from behind the arc).
  • Salve Regina cleaned up both ends of the glass for 50 rebounds (18 offensive, 32 defensive) while University of New England finished with 36 boards.
  • Kevin Kelly (Valhalla, N.Y.) led all players with his career-high 13 rebounds.
  • Isaiah Bowman (Roxbury, Mass.) and Cameron Collins (Oakdale, Conn.) joined Morton in double-digit scoring with 15 and 11 points, respectively.
  • Seahawks outscored the Nor'easters in the paint (30-22), off turnovers (17-10), and on second chances (19-6).

Next Up
Salve Regina (6-6, 3-2 CCC) returns to Rodgers Recreation Center to host Roger Williams University on Tuesday (7 p.m.). The University of New England (4-7, 2-2 CCC) will travel to Quincy, Mass., to face the Lions of Eastern Nazarene College on Tuesday (7:30 p.m.).