COLCHESTER, Vt. – Freshman Mike McCahey (Clarkstown, N.Y.) scored 20 points and sophomore Chris Santo (Cherry Hill, N.J.) hit a pair of free throws with 7.9 seconds left in regulation to lift the Saint Anselm College men's basketball team to a 62-61 win against Saint Michael's College on Thursday night at Ross Sports Center.
The Hawks, who have won four of their last five, improve to 6-2 on the season, including 4-2 in Northeast-10 play. The Purple Knights dip to 2-5, 1-5 NE-10.
McCahey was 6-for-14 from the floor, including 5 of 8 from deep, and 3-for-4 from the line. The five treys are a career high for McCahey, who also recorded nine rebounds and three assists. Sophomore Roy Mabrey (Belmar, N.J.) netted 16 points on 6 of 13 shooting, including 4 of 8 from long range, to go along with three rebounds and three assists. Santo added 10 points on 4 of 10 shooting and pulled in eight boards.
Saint Anselm trailed by six, 58-52, with just 2:52 remaining in regulation when it used an 8-1 spurt to grab a 60-59 lead with 1:47 to play. A McCahey jumper kicked off the run before Mike Thompson split a pair at the line keep Saint Michael's in front by five at the 2:35 mark. McCahey responded by knocking down a 3-pointer with 2:14 left that made it a two-point game and Mabrey followed with a trey of his own to close the run and put the Hawks on top by one.
After the teams traded misses, Corey Crawford was sent to the line where he knocked down both to put the hosts back in front by one, 61-60, with 42 ticks left. On the ensuing Saint Anselm possession, Santo grabbed the rebound off a blocked shot and was fouled with 7.9 seconds on the clock. Santo stepped to the line and calmly sank both shots to give the Hawks a 62-61 edge.
The Purple Knights called timeout with five seconds left before their final shot at the win. Crawford drove on the left wing, dishing to the corner as he spun and lost control. Mabrey stepped up to pick off the pass just before time expired as Saint Anselm sealed the come-from-behind win.
Saint Michael's outshot Saint Anselm, 46.8 percent (22-47) to 38.7 percent (24-62), including 40 percent (6-15) to 37.5 percent (9-24) from beyond the arc. The Purple Knights also held a 36-29 advantage on the boards, while scoring in the paint was even at 22 points apiece. The Hawks only turned the basketball over seven times, while forcing 17 Saint Michael's turnovers, which translated into a 21-7 gap in points off turnovers.
In a game that featured nine ties and 14 lead changes, the contest was tied 4-4 early on when 3-pointers by Mabrey and McCahey staked the Hawks to a six-point lead just under three minutes in. Saint Michael's responded with a 7-0 run – bookended by 3s from Greg Grippo and Dom Ditlefsen – that gave it an 11-10 lead at the 14:50 mark.
The Saint Anselm deficit was two at 18-16 when baskets by junior Dino Mallios (Winthrop, Mass.) and senior James Morse (Arundel, Maine) put the Hawks on top, 20-18, with 5:24 to play in the first half. The Purple Knights responded with back-to-back buckets from Thompson and Will Davis to go back up by two just under a minute-and-a-half later.
After McCahey made one of two at the line, James Cambronne knocked down a 3 and Saint Michael's led 25-21 with just under three minutes remaining. The teams traded baskets before McCahey stroked a 3 to make it a one-point game with 55 seconds on the clock, but Derek Knutty dropped in a layup with 34 seconds left and the Purple Knights took a 29-26 lead into the break.
Just 13 seconds into the second stanza, Mabrey buried a 3 and the game was tied at 29. With it tied at 31, Crawford hit a jumper before another McCahey triple touched off a 9-0 run that gave the Hawks a 40-33 lead 5:05 in. Saint Michael's answered with eight straight, including 3s from Davis and Crawford, to make it 41-40 in favor of the home team with 12:13 remaining.
A Mabrey trey halted the run, but a Ditlefsen 3-pointer and a three-point play from Cambronne opened up a 47-43 advantage for the Purple Knights with 9:35 left. The lead was still four when Cambronne poured in a jumper that made it 55-49 with 4:46 to go. McCahey cut the deficit in half with another 3, but Ditlefsen converted another three-point play to make it 58-52 with just 3:06 on the clock. Then McCahey and Mabrey took over to drag the Hawks back into the game and set up the dramatic finish.
Mallios finished with eight points on 4 of 9 shooting, in addition to tallying five assists, three rebounds and a pair of steals. Junior Dominic Borelli (Westbrook, Maine) chipped in six points, four boards and two steals.
Camrbonne led the Purple Knights with 15 points.
The Hawks return to action Sunday, Dec. 16 at 3 p.m. when they take on Post University. The next home game for the Hawks is Sunday, Dec. 30 at 1 p.m. when they play host to Bloomfield College at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium. Stay up-to-date with the latest news, including game previews and recaps, directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by liking us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/STAHawks) and following us on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/STAHawks).