Off to the Semi-Finals

KSC Men’s basketball is the top seed in the LEC after beating EastConn

Soren Frantz / Senior Photographer

Adriana Sanchez

Social Media Director

Saturday Feb. 16 was the Keene State Men’s Basketball senior day. Not only was it their senior day, but it was the day they played against Eastern Connecticut, the Warriors, one of their biggest rivals.

The last time the Owls beat the Warriors was on Jan. 25, 2017. Two years later, after a tough game, the Owls clinched their tenth straight win, and now they’re the top seed in the conference tournament.

The game started off with a packed gymnasium, more than 2,000 people attended the game according to Abe Osheyack who is the Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Compliance and Operations. The former school scoring holder Al Hicks was there to say a few words on Ty Nichols.

Although Nichols was fouled out of the game with three minutes remaining, he ended the game with 34 points, seven rebounds, five assists and four steals. Sophomore Miguel Prieto helped the team out with 16 points, three rebounds, three steals and two assists. Another sophomore, James Anozie, finished with 14 points, seven rebounds and one steal.

Key player for the Warriors Carlos Gonzalez led the Warriors with 25 points with four rebounds, three assists and two steals. First year for the Warriors Seth Thomas had 19 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore Cory Muckle helped the Warriors with 14 points and five rebounds.

It was a close game the whole time, without a significant point advantage until the end of the game.

Both teams struggled early into the game with their offense, but it was the Warriors who gained control at the start with a lead of 6-2. The Owls fired back with the help of Nichols and Anozie, with layups and back to back buckets from Prieto, which put them up 10-6 at the 13:29 mark. The Warriors never had the lead the first half, but did tie the game four times.

At the 6:05 mark, the Owls were up 24-20 with the help of Prieto. With seconds left on the clock in the first half, Nichols threw the ball from more than half court and made it in, but the referees did not count it.

At the start of the second half, the Warriors had their largest lead of the game, a score of 40-34. At the 12:03 mark, the Owls fired back on the court with the help of Prieto and Nichols which put them up 50-45. With seven minutes left, the score was 61-53 in favor of the Owls. Warriors player Seth Thomas had a triple, but it was quickly shut down when Nichols hit four points back and Prieto had a layup to put the score at 74-70 at the 4:16 mark.

The game was close at the end when the Warriors’ Gonzalez had a layup that put the game at a six-point game difference. Gonzalez counted to fire back with four straight free throws, which put the game at 74-70 Owls, with less than a minute left.

Head Coach, Ryan Cain was thinking about strategy during the last minute of the game. “We wanted to make sure we had the best possible lineups on offense and defense each possession. In addition, we wanted to make sure we knew what we were running on offense, what we wanted to do on defense, and let everyone know about the number of timeouts and the possession arrow,” said Cain.

With 40 seconds left on the clock, the game was at 76-74, Owls. The Owls were able to hold on and win the game with a score of 80 – 76. The Owls are now off to the semi-finals, which will be this Saturday here at the Keene State Gymnasium.

Adriana Sanchez can be contacted


Share and Enjoy !