Men's basketball toppled by Saint Michael's in overtime, 76-74

COLCHESTER, Vt. – Playing in its first overtime game of the season, the Saint Anselm College men's basketball team was downed by Saint Michael's College on Saturday, 76-74.

Box Score

Saint Anselm, the sixth-ranked team in the East Region, falls to 19-7 overall on the year and to 14-6 against Northeast-10 Conference opponents. Saint Michael's (7-18, 4-16 NE10) has defeated Saint Anselm for only the second time in its last 13 games. It was the first game between both programs that went to overtime since Jan. 26, 2002.

Senior Taylor Fortin played all 45 minutes in the contest, scoring four points and notching 11 assists. Junior Tim Guers scored 25 points and collected eight rebounds. Freshmen Gustav Suhr-Jessen and Chris Paul matched with 10 rebounds with the latter earning a double-double with 13 points.

Junior Cody Ball struck for 13 points and senior Austin Nydegger contributed 12 points and two steals off the bench.

The Hawks held an early 11-4 lead following five-straight points from Guers with only 4:09 into the contest. The Purple Knights rallied down the stretch, scoring 20 points in the paint across the first 20 minutes of action to create a 36-32 lead at the break. The Purple Knights held an 18-15 edge in first half rebounding and forced Saint Anselm into seven turnovers.

Saint Anselm overcame a nine-point deficit in the second half to force overtime, using a 19-6 scoring run that began only 4:20 into the second half. In that span, Ball had poured home 11 points that included three shots from beyond the arc. Nydegger also had a fast-break dunk in that stretch, breaking a 50-50 tie with 10:20 to go in regulation.

Both teams played to 11 ties in regulation time as Guers knotted the score at 66 with 29 seconds left by making his first free throw after a Derek Cheatom foul. In the final seconds of regulation time, the Saint Anselm defense forced overtime as Saint Michael's went 0-for-3 from the floor and Paul joined Ball with key blocks in the final eight seconds alone.

Saint Michael's controlled play shortly into overtime, creating a five-point lead with a stretch of six-straight points. With 1:50 on the clock, Ball and Fortin posted layups and Guers added a free throw make to tie the game at 74 with 32 seconds left on the game clock. With three seconds left in the stanza, Levi Holmes III was fouled and sent to the line, making back-to-back free throws.

Following a Hawks time out, Saint Anselm was able to get a shot off but it was blocked by Thomas Jackson III as time expired.

The Purple Knights were led by a 24-point performance by Holmes. Cheatom notched 18 points and Jaylen Hall scored 10 points in 26 minutes off the bench.

The Hawks wrap their regular season up on Tuesday, hosting Stonehill at 7:30 p.m. on Senior Day.