Le Moyne men fall at home to Adelphi

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Adelphi University placed four players in double figures en route to a 84-73 win over the Le Moyne College men’s basketball team on Wednesday night in Northeast-10 Conference action at Ted Grant Court.

“I thought we took a tremendous step backwards in our fast break effort,” said head coach Nate Champion ’14. “We work on it every single day. We always talk about when you are running in transition you go for lay-ups and it’s not fall-away baskets, it’s not jump shots, we’re going for lay-ups and I thought we did a poor job of executing that game plan.”

“We did a great job in the first half of battling back. We cut it to four a couple times and I thought we turned the ball over at some really costly times to get back. I thought we could have had the lead going into halftime weathering that storm and we didn’t. Part of that is just being a young team and learning and growing, but we’ve got to grow up fast right now because the hits are just going to keep coming if we’re not careful.”

Redshirt freshman guard Kevin Constant (Lawrence, Mass./Central Catholic/Tilton School) led the Dolphins offensively with a career-high 23 points, including 13 in the second half. Redshirt freshman guard Christian Davis (Denver, Colo./Mullen/New Hampton School) tallied 13 of his 14 points in the second half, while grabbing a game-high eight rebounds and blocking four shots. Senior guard Payton Hudson (Yonkers, N.Y./Our Saviour Lutheran/Iona/Independence C.C.) tallied 10 points off the bench.

Andrew Delaney and Isaiah Salter led the Panthers in the victory with 21 points each, while Delaney had 16 points in the second half and Salter put up 15 points after halftime. Adonis Williams scored nine of his 12 points in the first half, while adding a team-high seven rebounds. Ronnie Silva posted 10 points and dished out five assists.

After the teams split the first 14 points of the game, including Le Moyne’s only lead of the game at 5-4, Joshua Koulamallah scored four straight points to give the Panthers the lead for good.

The Dolphins got back within one on a pair of occasions over the next 3:48, but Adelphi answered with an 14-4 run to take a double-digit lead. Salter and Delaney made three-pointers, Williams scored in the paint and then Salter drilled another three-pointer for a 26-16 lead with 8:10 left. After junior forward Xavier Wilson (Spring Valley, N.Y./Archbishop Stepinac/The Hotchkiss School/Central Connecticut State) hit a jumper to snap an 8-0 run, Aristotelis Sotiriou drained a three-pointer for the team’s largest lead of the half.

Le Moyne countered with seven straight points and 10 of the next 12 to get back within three. Davis made a free throw, Constant hit a jumper in the paint, senior guard Nino Hernandez (Gardner, Mass./The Winchendon School/Bryant) made a foul shot and then Hudson drilled a three-pointer. Following a Silva jumper, redshirt freshman forward Isaiah Elmore (Tampa, Fla./Tampa Catholic) registered a conventional three-point play to pull the Dolphins within 31-28 with 2:06 left in the half.

The Panthers netted the next five points to regain control of the half. Silva buried a deep three-pointer and then Sotiriou made a pair of foul shots.

The teams traded points the remainder of the half as the Panthers took a 38-32 lead into the intermission.

Adelphi drained back-to-back three-pointers to start the second half to kick off an 18-2 run to blow the game open. Delaney and Salter had the first two three-pointers and then Salter made a jumper, Delaney hit another three-pointer, Williams and Sotiriou made lay-ups and then Silva drilled a three-pointer for a 56-34 lead with 16:16 left.

Le Moyne responded a 12-3 run to cut its deficit back to 13 with 10:52 to play. Davis made a three-pointer, redshirt freshman guard Jack Poirier (Scituate, Mass./Scituate) hit a jumper, Constant and Hernandez made fast-break jumpers and then Constant had a conventional three-point play to make it 59-46.

After Adelphi’s lead bounced between 12 and 17 points over the next six and one-half minutes and was at 71-56 with 4:10 to go following a free throw by Koulamallah, the Dolphins scored eight of the next nine points to get back within eight with 2:14 remaining. Hudson and Davis drilled three-pointers and then freshman guard Zy’Ever Wingfield (Richmond, Va./Henrico/Fork Union Military Academy) hit two foul shots.

Adelphi pushed its lead back to 12 with four points in eight seconds, but the Dolphins scored five in a row to get within seven, but that’s as close as they would get. Hudson scored three points over two possessions and then Constant had a lay-up off a backcourt steal.

Salter (6) and Delaney (2) combined to go 8-for-8 from the foul line in the final 45 seconds around four points by the Dolphins to put the game away.

Le Moyne (3-3, 1-2 NE10), which has dropped back-to-back home games to the Panthers after winning the previous seven matchups in Syracuse, is back in action on Saturday at Southern Connecticut State University at 3:30 p.m.

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