New London, Conn. – The Albertus Magnus College men's basketball team outlasted in-state rival Mitchell, 99-91, in non-conference action on Wednesday evening inside the Yarnall Athletic Center. With the win, the Falcons improve to 2-0 on the year, while the Mariners dropped to 1-2 overall with the loss during their home opener.
Five Falcons scored in double figures in the victory, as the team surpassed the 90-point plateau for the second straight game. Freshman forward Shontaey Lovell (Brooklyn, N.Y.) paced the Albertus attack once again with his second consecutive double-double. Lovell scored a game-high 25 points off the bench on 10-of-15 shooting and pulled down a game-best 17 rebounds. Albertus Magnus sophomore forward Jaqhawn Walters (Hartford, Conn.) continued his strong play, recording his first double-double of the year. Walters had 21 points thanks to 4-of-6 shooting from the charity stripe and grabbed 12 boards, 10 of which were on the defensive end.
It was a tale of two halves on Wednesday, as the Falcons jumped out to a 56-33 lead at halftime. During the first half, Albertus Magnus shot just under 49 percent from the field, highlighted by hitting seven three pointers, and forced eight Mitchell turnovers.
In the final 20 minutes, the hosts outscored the guests, 53-43, and caused 12 Falcon turnovers. Albertus went cold from beyond the arc in the second half, missing all four of its attempts, while the Mariners knocked down five shots from deep.
After the opening minutes of the contest, Mitchell did not lead. The Falcons controlled the tempo throughout the tilt and led by as many as 20 late in the first half. The visitors outrebounded Mitchell, 52-39, and dished out 17 assists on 36 field goals. Another factor in the victory was the bench scoring, as the Falcons reserves scored 49 points, while the Mariners received 18 points off the bench.
Offensively, Mitchell had a balanced attack with three players 21 or more points. Senior guard Frank Martin led the way with 25 points on 7-of-17 shooting. Martin had a solid all around game, grabbing nine rebounds to go along with four assists and three steals. Senior wing Donacan McClean contributed 22 points on a game-best 11 field goals, while adding five assists and five rebounds. Freshman center Domenico Santiago was a force in the post, scoring 21 points and pulling down nine rebounds.
Other players in double figures for the Falcons were sophomores Chaunce Dunbar (Windsor, Conn.) and Luciano Martinez (East Hartford, Conn.) and junior transfer Bernard Kline (Waterbury, Conn.). Dunbar poured in 12 points, thanks to a quartet of first-half treys, while Martinez hit 6-of-7 free throws and 4-of-7 shots from the field for 14 points to go along with six rebounds. Off the bench, Kline scored 12 and registered a team-high seven assists.
Albertus Magnus returns to action on Tuesday, November 24, with a home Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) clash versus Norwich. The contest with the Cadets gets underway at 7:00 pm and is the league opener for both squads.