FITCHBURG, Mass. – Vawn Lord scored 22 points to lead Westfield State, as the Owls held off Fitchburg State, 82-77 in MASCAC men's basketball at the Parkinson Gymnasium on Wednesday night.
With the win, Westfield improves to 14-10 overall and 7-4 in the MASCAC. The Owls are believed to have clinched the #2 seed in the conference tournament by virtue of tie breakers held vs. Fitchburg and Bridgewater, regardless of the outcomes on Saturday, pending confirmation from the league office.
Fitchburg falls to 11-13 and 6-5 in the league.
Westfield led from early in the first half, leading by as many as 12 in the second half, but the Falcons rallied all the way back to tie the game at 71-all as Andre Ruff hit 1-of-2 free throws with 2:30 remaining, The Owls got a pair of free throws from Jauch Green Jr. with 2:10 left to regain the lead for good. Malik Pouncy hit a pull up jumper late in the shot clock to give the Owls a 75-71 lead with 1:27 left. Westfield forced a shot clock violation on the next Fitchburg possession to help put the game away.
Marcus Collins added 21 points and Green 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Owls.
Westfield led 40-32 at the half behind 14 points from Marcus Collins on 6-6 shooting from the floor. The Owls edged away from Fitchburg late in the half, as the Owls forced 15 turnovers and managed to get to the line 16 times, making 12, in the first half.
Fitchburg was led by 18 points from Devan Harris and 17 points from Ruff.
The Owls will host Worcester State on Saturday in the final home game of the year, which will also be the Owls senior day. Tip off is 12 noon at the Woodward Center.