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Saturday: Tuft-ness and Pride – D3hoops

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Joshua Bernstein made the difference down the stretch as No. 12 Tufts topped No. 5 Keene State.
File photo by Tufts University athletics

No. 12 Tufts improved to 10-0 with a thrilling victory at No. 5 Keene State while Widener rolled over No. 15 Swarthmore, both ranked OAC teams won nailbiters, and Shenandoah reached double-digit wins in NCAA Division III men’s basketball action.

Tufts played tough defense and got big baskets late from Joshua Bernstein to top Keene State in New Hampshire, 65-63.

Alonzo Linton’s layup gave Keene State a five-point lead, 58-53, with 5:08 to play, but Tufts center Bernstein responded with a three-point play that set the score at 58-56. After the teams traded baskets, Bernstein struck again, converting another three-point play that put the Jumbos in front 61-60.  After the Owls tied the game at 63, Tufts called timeout and got the ball to Bernstein one more time, and he scored the game-winning layup with one second left.

Bernstein finished with 15 points on five field goals and five three throws. Khai Champion scored 17 off the bench for Tufts (10-0) while Jeff Hunter racked up 22 points and 12 boards for Keene State (8-2).

The day’s most surprising result came in suburban Philadelphia where Widener blasted 15th-ranked Swarthmore, 77-57. Widener converted 20 Garnet turnovers into 34 points and shot 53 percent from the floor. Kevin Schenk paced the Pride (8-1) with 21 points.

No. 1 John Carroll won its first game as the top-ranked team in the country, topping conference foe Muskingum, 87-84, though not without some drama. Will Yontek’s layup put John Carroll in front 87-70 with less than 90 seconds remaining and the game seemingly over. Muskingum scored the next 14 points and climbed within two at 87-84 with two seconds left but the Blue Streaks ran out the remaining ticks. Luke Chicone finished one assist short of a triple-double (19 points, 10 rebounds nine assists) for John Carroll (7-0)

No. 11 Mount Union shut out Ohio Northern in the final two minutes and held off the Polar Bears, 62-59. Ohio Northern guard Carter Reese hit a three-pointer that pulled Ohio Northern within one, 60-59, with 2:07 to play. After a Mount Union turnover, ONU missed two potential go-ahead three pointers before Darrell Newsome grabbed the defensive rebound for the Purple Raiders. Christian Parker split two free throws on the next two Mount Union possessions, and the Polar Bears game-tying three-point attempt was off the mark.

Parker and Collen Gurley combined for 29 points for Mount Union (7-1, 2-1), which shot 47 percent from the field.

No. 18 Williams rallied from an 11-point halftime deficit to defeat Springfield, 61-56. After trailing 35-24 at the break, the Ephs briefly took the lead with a 12-0 run midway through the second half, only to see Springfield go back on top with a 6-0 spurt. Williams responded with a 9-0 run and Alex Stoddard hit a three-pointer that put the Ephs in front for good. Stoddard led Williams (9-1) with 13 points off the bench.

No. 13 Trinity (Conn.) turned it up to 11 in an 84-46 win over Western New England. Ben Callahan-Gold posted 25 points, eight rebounds, and five blocks for the Bantams (11-0) who outscored the Golden Bears 48-19 in the first half.

Shenandoah also reached double-digit victories with a 76-65 road win at Arcadia. The Hornets shot 55 percent from the floor and overcame Jalen Watkin’s 30-point effort for Arcadia. Shenandoah (10-0) went 27 for 31 from the foul line with Davion Roberts converting eight of his nine attempts on his way to 14 points.

No. 17 WPI played stifling defense and shut down Babson, 61-49, in NEWMAC action. The Engineers held the Beavers to five field goals and 16 points in the first half, though WPI also only scored 26 points. The Engineers rode John Adams’ double-double (14 points, 12 rebounds to victory) with Donovan Sevilla adding 15 points for WPI (8-1, 2-0 NEWMAC).

No. 19 Trine had four starters score double figures and needed all those points to edge UW-Stevens Point, 79-78. The teams battled to tie scores at 72, 74 and 76-all before Grant Pahl hit a three-pointer with 35 seconds left that gave the Thunder the lead for good. Aidan Smylie led a well-balanced attack for Trine (7-0) with 18 points while Josiah Butler netted 25 for UW-Stevens Point.



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