North Adams, MA- MCLA's Mike Demartinis scored a career best 31 points and the Trailblazers withstood a furious rally and held on to defeat the visiting Westfield State men's basketball team 87-82. The Trailblazers (5-14, 1-6 MASCAC) snapped an eight game losing streak in the process and earned their first MASCAC win of the season.
The Owls fall to 10-10 overall and are now 3-4 in the MASCAC.
Demartinis was outstanding for MCLA going 8-14 from the floor along with a 14-15 showing from the free throw line. He added 7 rebounds. Hayden Bird added 14 points, but 13 came in the opening half of play. Shamar Logins chipped in with 10 points off the bench for MCLA.
The Trailblazers withstood a courageous performance from the Owls who trailed 55-36 at halftime and then 78-60 with just 6:41 left. Led by Jauch Green, Jr (30 points/18 rebounds), the Owls mounted a comeback. A three point play from Green launched a 16-2 spurt for the visitors to slice the lead to just 80-76, still with 1:24 left to play. Green scored 11 points during the run for the Owls.
MCLA quieted the run with a Gerald Herbert FT, but Green connected again to make it a one possession game at 81-78 with 43 seconds left. The Trailblazers' Bird was fouled and he hit one of two to extend to a four point lead, but giving the Owls back the ball. Westfield's Christopher Prophet drove to the hoop but was whistled for a charge and turned the ball back to MCLA with 22 seconds left.
Forced to foul, the Owls sent Demartinis to the line and he calmly drained both FT's to give MCLA an 84-78 lead. The Owls would get no closer the rest of the way and MCLA earned the victory.
In the opening half, MCLA broke open a close game after the score was just 25-23 with eight minutes before halftime. MCLA used a 13-2 run that was fueled by Demartinis and Logins. Demartinis scored the first seven points of the run while Logins ended it with six straight.
Green ended his afternoon going 12-19 for his 30 point effort. Prophet ended with 13 points for the Owls. Westfield shot 42% in the loss and committed 21 turnovers.
MCLA shot 48% in the win.
-- Release courtesy MCLA sports info