New Haven, Conn. – In his final home regular season contest, senior Marc Wilson (Jersey City, N.J.) scored a game-high 28 points to lead the Albertus Magnus College men's basketball team past visiting Emmanuel, 90-87, on Saturday afternoon in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) action at The Nest inside the Cosgrove Marcus Messer Athletic Center.
With their fourth straight GNAC win, the Falcons enter the post-season with an 18-5 overall record and a 14-4 mark in league play, while the Saints saw their five-game winning come to an end to move to 9-16 on the year and 9-9 in conference tilts. AMC clinched the No. 3 seed in the upcoming GNAC Tournament with the triumph.
Wilson topped the 20-point plateau for the second game in a row thanks to hitting 9-of-17 from the field and 9-of-10 from the charity stripe. The 6-3 wing also added three rebounds, three assists and two steals.
With the game knotted at 79 and just over two minutes left in regulation, Emmanuel senior forward John Clay gave the guests a two-point edge with a layup. On the ensuing possession, AMC junior guard Grant Ellis (Newark, N.J.) knocked down a trey as Albertus took back the lead for good at 82-81.
After forcing a Saint turnover, the Falcons stretched the lead to three at 84-81 following a lay in from Wilson. Down the stretch, Albertus Magnus would maintain its lead courtesy of a hitting six straight free throws with under a minute to play.
Emmanuel made the game interesting late, as Clay hit a three-pointer from well beyond the arc to pull the guests within three with four seconds left in the game. After AMC missed both free throws, neither team was able to control the bouncing ball as the final horn rang.
Over the first six minutes of the contest, Albertus Magnus jumped out to an early nine-point advantage. During the spurt, Wilson and freshman forward Shontaey Lovell (Brooklyn, N.Y.) combined to score 12 of the team's first 16 points, while knocking down all six of their shots from the field. After the early minutes, the Falcons never trailed during the first half. The home team would stretch its lead to as many as 15 at 33-18 after a Wilson lay in. Emmanuel closed the first half on a 15-6 run to pull within six at 39-33 at the break.
After Wilson, three other Falcons scored in double figures. Lovell continued his strong play in the post, recording his GNAC-leading 15th double-double of the winter courtesy of 19-point, 11-rebound performance. Sophomore forward Jaqhawn Walters (Hartford, Conn.) added 11 points and freshman point guard Ryan Pittman (Stratford, Conn.) poured in 10.
Sophomore guard Colin Cordero paced the Emmanuel attack with 23 points on 10-of-15 shooting. Clay added 14 points and seven rebounds after shooting an effective 6-of-8 from the field. Senior big man Kyle Davis recorded a double-double with 18 points and a game-high 12 rebounds, while junior guard Kyle Smith netted 10 for the guests.
Albertus Magnus will return to action on Tuesday, February 23, with a home GNAC Quarterfinal contest. The third-seeded Falcons will host sixth-seeded Mount Ida at 7:00 pm.