WATERBURY, Conn. – Freshman Mike McCahey (Clarkstown, N.Y.) poured in 21 points to help the Saint Anselm College men's basketball team overcome a 20-point second-half deficit and defeat Post University, 73-68, in non-conference action Sunday afternoon at the Drubner Center.
The Hawks, who have won five of their last six, improve to 7-2, while the Eagles, who entered the contest a perfect 4-0 at home, drop to 8-3.
McCahey posted the second highest point total of his career on 7 of 10 shooting from the field, including 2 of 5 from deep, and a perfect 5 of 5 shooting at the line, while pulling down five rebounds. Sophomore Roy Mabrey (Belmar, N.J.) netted 18 points, including 11 in the second half, as he shot 6 of 15 from the floor and 4 of 4 at the stripe, while registering six rebounds and two assists. Junior Dino Mallios (Winthrop, Mass.), who also added 11 in the second half, matched his season high and came just a point from his career high on 7 of 12 shooting, including 3 of 4 from behind arc. Mallios also recorded five assists, four rebounds and a pair of steals.
Trailing by an even 20, 53-33, with 13:54 remaining in the contest, the Hawks reeled off a 9-2 run to slice their deficit to 13. Mabrey sparked the effort with a 3-pointer before a Mallios layup made it a 15-point game. Jerry Cummings then stopped the streak with a jumper, but baskets from McCahey and Mallios closed the stretch to make it 55-42 with 12:12 to play.
The Saint Anselm deficit was 15 less than a minute later when the visitors scored seven straight to trim it to eight. Mallios ignited the run with a jumper before a 3 from junior John Nielsen (Port Jefferson, N.Y.) made it a 10-point contest just 2:59 after Post had held a 20-point advantage.
A pair of Mabrey free throws cut it to 57-49 at 10:34 before a Travis Carbajal layup pushed it back to 10. The Hawks then scored six straight with a three-point play from McCahey and another trey from Nielsen on back-to-back possession slicing it to 59-55 with 8:10 left.
The Hawks still trailed by four with 3:26 to go when Mallios buried a huge 3 that brought them within 66-65. Mabrey then dropped in a layup with 2:36 remaining and Saint Anselm led for the first time in the contest. Following a Sarunas Jackson layup that put Post back in the lead with 2:15 left, the Hawks scored the final six points of the game to steal the win.
Senior James Morse (Arundel, Maine) knocked in a jumper with 1:58 to play to give Saint Anselm the lead for good at 69-68. Morse then gave the Hawks some insurance with a layup just 25 seconds later. Mabrey added a pair of free throws with 20 seconds left to seal it.
After the Jackson layup, the Saint Anselm defense forced the Eagles to shoot 0-for-7 and forced a turnover in the final 2:14.
Saint Anselm outshot Post, 45.8 percent (27-59) to 44.4 percent (28-63), including 56.3 percent (18-32) to 30.6 percent (11-36) in the second half. The Eagles held a 36-22 advantage in the paint, while their bench outscored the Hawks' bench, 23-9. Rebounding was even at 34 apiece and Saint Anselm had one fewer turnover (15) than Post (16).
Nielsen chipped in eight points on 3 of 8 shooting, including 2 of 6 from 3-point range, to go along with five rebounds. Morse also added eight points on 4 of 5 shooting.
After jumping out to a 7-2 lead, Post was on top 11-10 when a 7-0 run made it an eight-point game midway through the opening half. The lead was still eight at 20-12 with 8:55 remaining in the first when a 5-1 spurt widened the gap to 12 before a pair of free throws from McCahey and a Mabrey 3-pointer cut it to seven.
The Eagles still led by seven, 31-24, at the 2:20 mark when seven straight points from Zach Krischer and a Stephen Perry 3 ballooned the lead to 41-24 just 1:12 later. Mallios snapped the run with a 3-pointer before a Carbajal dunk with six seconds remaining capped the first-half scoring and sent Post to the locker room with a 43-27 advantage.
After the teams traded baskets to keep it a 16-point game to begin the second half, baskets by Mallios and Morse trimmed it to 12 at 45-33 3:06 in. An 8-0 run, however, with five straight points from Cummings and a 3-pointer from Krischer, pushed the Post lead to 53-33 – their largest of the day – with 14:26 remaining in the contest.
Krischer led the Eagles with 14 points, while Cummings added 13.
The Hawks return to action 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).