Second Half Surge Sends Stonehill Past Queens, 78-65

Sophomore Josh Heyliger scored 15 of his career-high 20 points in the second half to lift the Skyhawks past Queens. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

Heyliger scores 15 of his career-high 20 points in the second half to lead Skyhawks

EASTON, Mass. (November 10, 2013) – Stonehill College erased a 12 point first half deficit on its way to a 78-65 victory over Queens (N.Y.) College for its second-straight win to start the season in non-conference men's basketball action on day two of the Stonehill Tip-Off Classic at Merkert Gymnasium this afternoon. The win completed a Northeast-10 Conference sweep of the weekend event as Saint Michael's College rolled to a 97-57 triumph in today's opening game.

Sophomore Josh Heyliger (Queens, N.Y./The Hill School) led Stonehill for the second straight night as he scored 15 of his career-high 20 points in the second half to lead the Skyhawks rally. He made 7-of-15 shots from the field, including 2-for-3 from three-point range, going 5-for-8 in the second half, and converted 4-of-5 free-throws to go with two rebounds, two blocked shots and two steals. Freshman Ryan Logan (Fredericktown, Ohio/Fredericktown) posted his second-straight double-figure outing to start his collegiate career by adding a season-high 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting, making his lone three-pointer, to go with six rebounds, two blocks and a steal.

Sophomore Carter Smith (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington) scored 11 of his career-best 17 points in the first half, aided by a 9-for-12 shooting effort at the free-throw line with six assists, two rebounds and a steal. Junior captain Jack Cole (New Providence, N.J./New Providence) chipped in eight points on 4-of-7 shooting, a game-high eight rounds, two blocks and a steal.

Stonehill shot 55.2-percent (16-for-29) from the field in the second half to finish the day at 46.3% (25-for-54) overall, including 6-for-12 (50%) from three-point range as they Skyhawks hit 3-of-5 (60%) from deep in the first half. Stonehill also converted 71% (22-31) of its free-throws and finished with a 36-33 rebounding edge. The Skyhawks posted a 23-8 advantage in points off turnovers, turning the ball over just 11 times compared to 17 for Queens.

Senior George Holmes (Gordon Heights, N.Y.) led Queens with a game-high 24 points (19 second half) on 7-of-10 shooting, including 3-for-3 from beyond the arc, and converting 7-of-9 free-throws to go with five rebounds. Classmate Amir Tarif (New York, N.Y.) was the only other Knights player in double-figures with 14 points in 19 minutes off the bench on 5-of-6 shooting from the field and 4-for-6 from the line, while adding five boards and a blocked shot. Junior Richard Council, Jr. (New York, N.Y.) chipped in with eight points on 4-of-7 shooting and a team-high seven rebounds.

Sophomore Carter Smith posted a career-best 17 points to go with six assists for the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

Queens finished shooting 41.8% (23-55) from the field after hitting at a 52% (13-25) clip in the first half. The Knights made just 10-of-30 (33.3%) shots over the final 20 minutes and was 4-for-12 (33.3%) from beyond the arc for the afternoon, including 2-for-7 (28.6%) in the second half. Queens held a 16-9 edge in second chance points, despite the rebounding differential.

Stonehill trailed by 12 (26-14) after a layup by junior Patrick Modzelewski (Brooklyn, N.Y.) with 7:55 remaining in the first half. Still down 12 (30-18) with 5:44 left in the half, Stonehill used a 12-4 run to close out the half and cut its deficit to four (34-30) at the break. Smith and Heyliger both buried three-pointers to spark the run, with Smith scoring five points in all during the stretch, which was capped by a Stuart McEwen (Sydney, Australia/Saint Thomas More (Conn.)) jumper with three seconds left.

Queens maintained its advantage through the opening six minutes of the second half, holding a seven point (45-38) lead after a pair of Holmes free-throws with 14:19 remaining. Stonehill fired off an 11-3 run to take its first lead (49-48) since scoring the first basket of the game after layup by Cole with 10:23 on the clock.

Tarif put Queens back on top on its next trip down the court, but Stonehill kept rolling, with 12 of the next 15 points to open an eight point lead (61-53) after a Smith free-throw with 6:02 to go. The Skyhawks run reached 19-5 as they extended the lead to a game-high 13 (68-55) on a Heyliger layup off his own steal with 3:22 left. He had nine points during that stretch, while Logan added five.

Queens drew within nine (68-59) after a Tarif free-throw with 2:05 on the clock, but would get no closer. Stonehill made seven of its next nine free-throws to seal the win from there.

Sophomore Morrell Gaskins (Cambria Heights, N.Y./Archbishop Molloy) led four Saint Michael's players in double figures in a balanced scoring effort during its 97-57 win over Georgian Court. He made 5-of-6 shots from the field and converted all three free-throw attempts to go with a team-high nine rebounds and two steals in 23 minutes off the bench. Junior Jordan Wejnart (Point Pleasant, N.J.) led the Lions with the first double-double in program history for the first year program as he finished with a game-high 19 points and 11 rebounds, with two assists and two steals.

Stonehill (2-0, 0-0 NE-10) is off until next weekend when it hits the road to face Saint Thomas Aquinas College on Saturday, November 16, at 5 p.m. The Skyhawks next home game is Wednesday, November 20, when they open their NE-10 schedule against Merrimack College at 7:30 p.m. Queens (0-2, 0-0 ECC) hosts Hunter College on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

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