PROVIDENCE, RI – A push at the conclusion of the first half ended up being the difference for the Johnson & Wales University men's basketball team. That surge propelled the Wildcats to a 97-91 win over Lasell College on Saturday.
Lasell 5-8, 3-1 GNAC
Johnson & Wales: 7-6, 4-1 GNAC
Brian Hogan-Gary (JWU): 25 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists
Jarell Lawson (JWU): 26 points, 7 rebounds
Nate Patenaude (JWU): 20 points
Stefan Masciarelli (LC): 20 points
The first half was a back-and-forth affair. Johnson & Wales jumped out to a 17-7 lead on a Brian Hogan-Gary (Staten Island, NY) layup, but the Lasers chipped away and took a 33-32 lead on a Stefan Masciarelli jumper with 5:21 remaining. Lasell's lead grew to as many as five before JWU finished the half on a 14-2 run to take a 48-41 margin into the half.
Johnson & Wales maintained its advantage for the entire second half, but had to fend off several Lasell runs. The lead grew to as many as 73-59 on a Donovian Maxfield (York, Pa.) jumper with 9:41 to play. The Lasers scored 10 points in the final 1:15, but JWU made its free throws to secure the victory.
Three different Wildcats scored 20 or more points, led by Jarell Lawson's (Providence, RI) game-high 26 to go along with seven rebounds. Hogan-Gary just missed a double-double with 25 points and nine rebounds as well as five assists. Rookie Nate Patenaude (Smithfield, RI) tossed in a season-high 20 points.
The Lasers had five players in double figures, led by Masciarelli with 20. Scott Arsenault added 18 and Liam Jacobs came off the bench to match Arsenault. Both teams relied on the three-pointer with Lasell making 12 behind the arc and the Wildcats hit 10. Lasell couldn't make the most of its trips to the charity stripe, shooting 61.9 percent (13-of-21) while JWU knocked down 81 percent (17-of-21).
The Wildcats travel to Emmanuel on Tuesday for a 7 p.m. contest.