Loud First Half Leads Men’s Basketball Over Pace, 88-75

Loud First Half Leads Men’s Basketball Over Pace, 88-75

Four Ravens finish in double digits

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. (January 26, 2016) – Sophomore center Mike McDevitt (Cumberland, Maine) had 12 points at the half on Tuesday night and senior guard Tyler Iacuone (Mahopac, N.Y.) added 11, as part of a 49-point first-half onslaught by the Franklin Pierce University men's basketball team at Pace. Both would finish with over 20 points, leading four Ravens in double digits in an 88-75 road win in Northeast-10 Conference play at Goldstein Fitness Center.

With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 10-8 (7-6 Northeast-10), while Pace falls to 8-13 (5-8 Northeast-10).

The Ravens -- who shot 49.1% from the floor on Tuesday (30-for-61) -- took control of the game for good with a huge run through the second half of the first half. Pace sophomore guard Bryan Rivers hit a layup with 10:19 remaining in the first half to put the Setters out front, 24-22, but it would be the last Pace points for over four minutes. The Ravens immediately embarked on a 20-0 run that all but put the game away. Iacuone started things with a jumper, McDevitt had a three-point play, sophomore forward Asante Sandiford (Boston, Mass.) had five points and junior guard Donte Gittens (Hartford, Conn.) had four points, including a dunk which turned into a three-point play, as Franklin Pierce jumped to a 42-24 lead. In all, the Ravens would outscore Pace 27-6 over the remainder of the half after the Rivers layup, en route to a 49-30 halftime lead.

The second half was all about managing the lead for the Ravens, and manage they did. An 11-4 spurt early in the frame pushed the lead as high as 21, at 65-44, after Gittens put home a dunk and a layup on back-to-back possessions, the latter of which came with 12:30 to play. Pace was able to cut into the gap down the stretch, thanks in part to shooting 48.8% (16-for-33) in the second half, but the hole was simply way too big. The Setters could get no closer than 11 and went on to lose by 13, at 88-75.

Iacuone finished as Franklin Pierce's leading scorer, matching his season and career high with 22 points on 8-for-12 shooting, including 5-for-9 from three-point range. McDevitt added 20 points on 8-for-12 shooting as well, while Gittens chipped in 16 and junior guard Matt Banton (Brooklyn, N.Y.) provided 12 off the bench. McDevitt collected a team-high nine rebounds to narrowly miss a double-double, while Gittens grabbed five boards, dished out four assists and blocked three shots.

For Pace, senior guard Shelton Mickell poured in a game-high 35 points on 12-for-20 from the floor, 4-for-5 from long range and 7-for-8 from the free-throw line. Unfortunately for the Setters, he would account for nearly half the team's offense, as the rest of the squad combined for just 40 points. Junior forward Austin Mofunanya (18 points) and freshman guard Ryan Peterson (13 points) joined Mickell in double digits. Mofunanya matched McDevitt's nine rebounds to narrowly miss a double-double of his own.

The Ravens return to the court on Saturday, Jan. 30, when they travel to Le Moyne for a Northeast-10 Conference contest. Opening tip is set for 2 p.m. at Ted Grant Court in Syracuse, N.Y.

For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce men's basketball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).