Costly Turnovers Seal Eagles Fate in Loss to Pilgrims

Costly Turnovers Seal Eagles Fate in Loss to Pilgrims

HENNIKER, N.H.—The Green Mountain College men's basketball team outscored their opponents from the field but surrendered 25 points off turnovers up to drop a 90-76 decision to New England College on Tuesday night in North Atlantic Conference (NAC) play.

The win boosts the Pilgrims to 5-3 overall and 1-1 in the NAC, while Green Mountain falls to 3-4 overall and 1-2 in league play.

Leading the way for NEC was Ricky Leonard, who scored 20 points and tallied two assists and two steals. Izaiah Winston-Brooks added 19 points, followed by Will Melanson with 15 points in just 12 minutes off the bench on 4-for-9 shooting from three-point range. Jason Jones checked in with a double-double of 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Junior forward Matt Hess (Rising Sun, Md.) had a game for the Eagles, scoring a career-high 26 points on 11-for-12 shooting from the floor along with four free-throws in addition to his nine rebounds. Junior guard De Shaun Carr (Moreno Valley, Calif.) added 16 points and seven boards off the bench for the Eagles, while Sean Leflore (Moreno Valley, Calif.) paced the defense with 11 rebounds in addition to his nine points.
 
The Pilgrims led a close game early and allowed Green Mountain a one-point lead at the 13:40 mark, but NEC quickly took control back by going on a 12-0 run to lead by double figures just four minutes later. GMC would cut the deficit to four at the 3:06 mark following a three-point make from Christian Przybyla (Clifton, N.J.), but the Pilgrims Leonard converted an and one with time winding down to send the hosts into halftime with a 44-36 lead.

NEC opened the second half with a 14-0 run to set the tone of the half. The Eagles were unable to dig themselves out of the deficit, only coming as close at 12 points throughout the rest of the contest.

Turnovers were the deciding factor in the game, as NEC scored 25 points off of Green Mountain's 24 turnovers in the contest. In comparison, the Pilgrims committed just nine turnovers, handing the Eagles seven points. Green Mountain also struggled shooting the ball from distance hitting on just 1-of-12 attempts although they bested the Pilgrims in field goal efficiency (45.9%-40.8%). The teams battled closely on the boards with the Eagles holding a slim 42-41 edge on the glass.

The Eagles are back in action on Friday for a 7:30 p.m. NAC contest against Husson at home.