WATERBURY, Conn. – The nationally-ranked Saint Anselm College men's basketball team was downed by the host Eagles from Post University, 88-75, on Wednesday.
Saint Anselm, ranked 20th in NCAA Division II by both the D2CCA and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, falls to 5-2 overall on the season. Receiving votes in the D2CCA East Region Media Poll, Post moves to 6-2 on the year with the victory.
Senior Danny Evans (Leeds, United Kingdom) scored 20 points with eight rebounds and three assists. Junior Chris Paul (Highland Mills, N.Y.) posted 14 points with seven rebounds and classmate Alonzo Jackson (Medford, Mass.) posted 10 points with nine rebounds off the bench. Junior Gustav Suhr-Jessen (Virum, Denmark) logged 12 points and four rebounds.
In the last four contests, Paul is shooting nearly 87% from the free throw line as he has made 32-of-37 shots from the charity stripe. Against the Eagles, the Hawks were 21-of-24 (87.5%) and have made at least 21 foul shots in each of the last three games.
Post held on to the non-conference victory by committing only four turnovers on the evening. Saint Anselm outrebounded the Eagles by a 44-to-40 margin, but committed 16 miscues, allowing a total of 16 points off turnovers. Post also scored 15 second-chance points and had its bench combine for 30 points in the win.
The Eagles built up a 10-point lead with just over eight minutes elapsed in regulation time as a D.J. Jarrett three-point basket upped the hosts advantage. Still owning a nine-point lead with less than eight to go in the first half, Post conceded 16 of the game's next 18 points to Saint Anselm. A layup in the paint by sophomore Joey Belli (Wayne, N.J.) gave the Hawks a 40-35 lead with 2:29 left.
Saint Anselm traded the lead with Post on several occasions to begin the second half, but it was the Hawks who found themselves on top with 10:09 left in regulation time following two Jackson free throws. Trailing Saint Anselm by a 62-59 lead at that point, Post fired off a 19-5 scoring run to rebuild a double-digit lead with 2:59 left.
The Hawks used an Evans trey and four free throws in a 41-second span with three minutes left, shrinking the Post lead to four points, 78-74, but in a foul shot battle, Post rebuilt a double-digit advantage as time expired.
Saint Anselm returns to Northeast-10 Conference play on Saturday, Dec. 7 at Stonehill. The game is slated to begin at 3:30 p.m.