Men’s basketball starts off strong as it continues its undefeated streak

The Keene State men’s basketball team stayed undefeated during Thanksgiving break. They now have a record of 3-0. The men traveled to Oneonta, New York, the weekend of Nov. 18. They played Hartwick College on Nov. 18, State University of New York (SUNY) at Oneonta Nov. 19 and then played at home Tuesday night Nov. 22 against Springfield College.

Ty Nichols is only a sophomore, but already has 54 points from the last three games.


Nichols led the Owls to a 79-63 win over Hartwick College.

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Five Keene State players made it into double digits during the Hartwick game. Nichols had a total of 18 points, junior Dizel Wright had a total of 16 points, senior Matthew Ozzella had 13 points, first-year Damonte Turner had 11 points and senior Jaquel Edwards added 10.

Nichols sank a three on the Owls’ first possession, but Hartwick player Joey Lufkin was fouled on a three-point attempt. Lufkin shot three for three for a 7-5 lead at the 16:38 mark.

Ozzella’s layup gave the Owls a 10-7 lead, only to have the Hawks go on a 9-2 run over the next three minutes taking a 16-12 lead.

Nichols’ steal and toss to Wright for a layup was part of a 9-2 run that gave KSC a 27-23 advantage, and Edwards’ three with 4:51 left boosted the lead to 34-24. Brandon LaForest’s layup with 1:35 remaining trimmed the gap to 36-35.

The Hawks’ Matt Knezovic sank a three with 31 seconds left to cut the lead to 40-38, but Turner grabbed a rebound of his own, missed the shot and knocked down a three pointer at the first-half buzzer to send the Owls into the locker room up 43-38.

Hartwick scored the first five points of the second half, tying the game 43-43 in the early stages on Lufkin’s three with 1:10 played.

Jeffrey Lunn restored the lead for Keene State with a layup just a minute later. There was no turning back for the Owls after that.

Nichols swished a three that made it 50-43, and Ozzella laid in the rebound of a missed three pointer to make it 53-45. Turner then made consecutive threes for a 68-52 lead.

Ozzella sank a three of his own, giving Keene State the win by double-figures of 77-58 for the second straight game.


The following day, the Keene State Owls played SUNY Oneonta. It was nothing but double digits for six of the Owls: Wright (22), Nichols (21), Edwards (17), Ozzella (16), Lucas Hammel (12) and Deonte Vinson (10).

Oneonta started out the game with their first four three-point shots and opened up an 18-11 game with 15:06 on the clock.

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Kevin Mackin’s layup with 11:01 to go in the half gave Oneonta a 26-17 lead, but the Owls closed within five points on Lunn’s hoop at the 9:14 mark.

Oneonta continued to make threes and took a 38-27 lead on a triple with 6:38 to go, but the Owls went on a 12-2 run over the next two minutes, capped by Wright’s layup that made it a one point (40-39) game.

After Wright’s three-pointer, the game was tied at 47, and Oneonta went on a 9-3 run before Vinson knocked down a three just ahead of the first-half buzzer to cut the lead to 56-53 at the half.

Oneonta picked up right where they left off, as Mikey McElroy knocked down a three on the Red Dragons’ first possession and Lawrence Coleman completed a three-point play at the 16:56 mark for a 65-59 lead.

From there, the Owls took it home. Keene State went on a 15-2 run over the next 4:33 and never trailed again. Ozzella tipped in a rebound to get the Owls within two points. Nichols’ layup tied the game on the next possession.

Hammel knocked down a three off a feed from Ozzella, Nichols had back-to-back baskets and Ozzella, again, scored down low for a 74-67 advantage.

Nichols picked Frankie Kelly’s pocket and sprinted the other way for a fast break dunk which made it 78-69, but the Red Dragons had one final run, getting within 83-79 on a three from Oneonta.

Ozzella’s layup with 2:14 left made it 94-87, and the Red Dragons didn’t get closer than eight the rest of the way; Wright’s dunk with 11 seconds left set the final margin. The Owls took the win 104-90.


The Keene State Owls made it into triple digits in their game Tuesday, Nov. 19. The Owls beat Springfield College 107-84.

Ozzella scored a career-breaking high of 31 points, 22 in the first half and 9 in the second. Ozzella was just one of five players that made it to double digits.

Vinson and Nichols each sank 17 points, while Edwards made 16 and Hammel got 10.

An early three-pointer from Springfield’s Andy McNulty tied the game early on 6-6. The Owls quickly got the lead back with a three-point play from Edwards, leading KSC 16-4 with just 11:40 on the clock. Ozzella with a layup and Nicholas with another three pushed the Owls even further.

Ozzella didn’t stop there; he rebounded a Springfield player and sank a three-pointer at the 5:45 mark. Ozzella pushed the Owls up 38-22.

Jimmy Layman entered the court and added three more three-pointers in the last five minutes of the first half. Layman gave the Owls a lead of 60-33.

Vinson started the second half with a three-point play. Ozzella showed his depth with another three-pointer, bringing the Owls up 75-45. With just 13:55 left on the clock, Springfield took a timeout.

Nichols made a layup and pushed Keene State even further, giving them their biggest lead of 34 points during the game. Springfield’s Trey Witter tried to make a comeback and shot back-to-back threes, cutting the lead to just 22 points. McNulty doubled that at 6:43, bringing the game to 89-71.

Springfield kept hitting threes, but it wasn’t enough. The Hawks fell to the Owls 107-84 at the sound of the buzzer.

Keene State will played at home Wednesday, Nov. 30 against Trinity College. The results will be in the next edition of The Equinox.

Women’s Basketball takes its first loss of the season at the Skidmore Tournament

The Keene State women’s basketball team had a busy week before Thanksgiving break. The lady Owl’s traveled to Saratoga Springs, New York, to play in the Skidmore Tournament the weekend of Nov. 18 and 19.

First up on the tournament list was Tufts University, and then the following day they played Endicott College. This wouldn’t be the first time they were to see Endicott, for the lady Owls then played them again at home on Tuesday Nov. 22.


Junior guard Lydia Vital had a career high of 13 points in the game on Nov. 18. Despite the huge mark on Vital’s career, the Owls fell short to the No. 1 team 60-38. Tufts started off strong in the first quarter, but the Owls couldn’t get a jump on their offense. Senior Amanda Petrow knocked down a jump shot at the seven-minute mark. At the end of the first period, the Owls were down by 15.

The Owls found a bit of spark in the second period. They sank two three-pointers, made by Rachel Bonnanzio and Vital. Keene State tried to pick themselves up as the first half was coming to a close.

Within the final five minutes the Owls went on a scoring rampage; they scored more points in the last five minutes than in the first 15.

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

With only 18 seconds remaining, Vital made a layup and left the score 28-14 with Tufts in the lead at the half.

In the third quarter, the Jumbos continued to excel with baskets from Melissa Baptista and Michela North with just 7:41 remaining. Vital made a three-pointer with 4:26 left on the clock, but the Jumbos continued to score.

The Owls started the fourth quarter high as Sandi Purcell nailed a three, but the Jumbos were quick to respond with a 5-0 run, with baskets from Katie Martensen ad Cailin Harrington.

With just 7:30 on the clock, Petrow made two layups tightening the gap between the Owls and the Jumbos. Yet again, the Jumbos quickly reacted with a 4-0 run. The Owls fell short 60-38 to the Jumbos.

Endicott (Away)

The Keene State lady Owls Defeated Endicott College Saturday, Nov. 19 at the two-day Skidmore Tournament. Because of her efforts throughout the tournament, Vital received All-Tournament honors. She started both games and racked up a total of 32 points, four assists and six rebounds.

The Endicott Gulls snagged an early lead, but Vital came right back with two free throws, getting the Owls on the board. The two teams went back and forth until the last three minutes of the quarter.

Purcell sank two free throws and a shot from Emily McPadden sent the Owls into the lead at the end of the first quarter with a score of 35-26.

The Owls continued to bring it throughout the second quarter. They gained their largest gap of 11 points. With just 4:07 left on the clock, Purcell shot a three.

The gulls reacted to Purcell’s three with a three of their own from Ilyza Holman, but the Owls kept their lead. Going into the half, the Owls remained on top 35-26.

Endicott came in strong in the beginning of the third quarter, making a 7-2 run to start it off. The Gulls made a comeback just one point behind Keene State 51-50.

Two minutes into the fourth quarter with still no points to be made, Purcell got it started with a layup. Keene State called a timeout with 7:07 left on the clock. Catie Lipscomb made a layup keeping Endicott within one point. Purcell came back with another layup. Vital widened the lead the Owls had on the Gulls with multiple free throws. The lady Owls took the win over Endicott 72-60.

Endicott (Home)

Endicott came back to Keene State looking for a battle on the night of Tuesday, Nov. 22.

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

Shelby Iava/ Sports Editor

The two teams went back and forth with points in the beginning of the first quarter. Purcell with a three at the 6:27 minute mark pushed the Owls forward 7-4.

Endicott then went on an 8-0 run, followed by a three-pointer from Lipscomb. Senior Sarah Kober came in with a layup, but Endicott was able to remain on top at the end of the first quarter, 19-12.

In the second quarter Endicott came quick with two shots on the basket. Petrow fought back with a layup, followed by a shot from Purcell to cut the gap to five points.

Endicott pulled ahead by 10 points with just under five minutes remaining on the clock. McPadden had an 8-0 burst that put Keene State within two points, but Endicott was able to stay in the lead 31-28.

A three-point shot from McPadden opened up the third quarter for the Owls, which would tie up the score 31-31. The Gulls came back hard with a 12-0 run and had received their biggest lead yet.

Petrow and Bonnanzio kept the Owls close. Endicott continued to keep their lead even with two free throws from McPadden, leaving it at 51-43 at the end of the third quarter.

Endicott opened up with a three-point shot from Hannah Shaw.

The Owls and the Gulls went shot-for-shot, but the Gulls advanced over the Owls 57-47. Keene State was unable to close the gap and Endicott took the win 67-57.

Shelby Iava can be contacted at

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