Fisher 70 Connecticut College 63 Messier Nets 19 Points for Camels

Fisher 70 Connecticut College 63 Messier Nets 19 Points for Camels

NEW LONDON, Conn.—Malik Wilson (St. Louis Park, Minn.) scored 22 points and hauled in 13 rebounds to lead the Fisher College men's basketball team to a 70-63 victory at Connecticut College Wednesday night.

The Falcons improved their record to 14-7 with the triumph, while the Camels fell to 11-7 with the loss. 

Senior forward Cooper Neal (Fresno, Calif.) had the hot-hand from the perimeter, connecting on 4-of-5 shots from long distance and 8-of-13 attempts from the field to finish with 21 points and seven rebounds. Kyle Holmes (Hampden, Conn.) added 12 points, nine assists and six rebounds as the Falcons' floor general.

Senior Lee Messier (Narragansett, R.I.) scored a team-best 19 points for the Camels while adding six rebounds. Messier was 4-for-9 from long distance. He torched the Falcons for 25 points in their previous meeting back on December 5, 2015. Sophomore David Labossiere (Stoneham, Mass.) added nine points and three rebounds for the hosts. 

Daniel Janel (Fresh Meadows, N.Y.) and Tyler Rowe (East Hartford, Conn.) both finished with eight points. Zuri Pavlin (New York, N.Y) hauled in eight rebounds to go with his four points for the Camels.

"We shot the ball poorly," Connecticut College Head Men's Basketball Coach Tom Satran said. "Tough night for us in that regard and we are certainly disappointed we couldn't make a few more points. We have a good club though, we will bounce back." 

The Camels put together a 6-0 run midway through the opening half to turn a one-point deficit into a five point advantage. A steal by Colin Pascoe (Somers, Conn.) ignited the Camels on their run. Pascoe connected with Labossiere in transition who drove to the hoop for a thunderous dunk to make it an 18-17 Camel lead with 9:33 to go.

On their next possession, some yeoman's work by Phil Leotsakos (Arlington, Mass.) paid dividends as the sophomore forward corralled an offensive board and tipped one in to make it a 20-17 contest. Pavlin closed out the run with Rowe serving as the facilitator, vaulting the hosts out to a 22-17 edge with 7:53 to play.

But Neal sparked the Falcons on an 8-0 run of their own, knocking down a trey from the right side with 4:31 remaining to put the visitors on top for good. A backdoor cut and layup by Wilson capped the rally with 1:44 remaining to make it a 33-25 game with 1:44 to go. Janel tipped in a field goal at the buzzer to trim the deficit to 33-27 at the break. 

Fisher led by as many as 11 points in the second stanza. But a key offensive rebound by Aaron Swenson (Waltham, Mass.) led to a three-point field goal conversion for Isaiah Robinson (Lynn, Mass.) from the middle of the arc with 9:01 to go that trimmed the deficit to 53-51, bringing an animated home crowd to its feet. A little later on in the half with 6:43 to play, Swenson assisted Labossiere for a hoop that pulled the Camels to within 56-55.

But Neal and the Falcons converted on a couple of critical possessions in the paint to pull away for good. Wilson dished to Neal for a hoop on a backdoor cutter with 3:11 remaining to push the lead back to 63:56. Messier pulled the Camels to within six with 55 seconds left but the Camels could not get any closer and the Falcons escaped with the nine point win.