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Fast Start Leads Wildcats to 78-61 Victory over Warriors

Fast Start Leads Wildcats to 78-61 Victory over Warriors

PROVIDENCE, RI – Strong three-point shooting guided the Johnson & Wales University men's basketball team to victory on Thursday. The Wildcats won their third game in a row by beating Eastern Connecticut State University, 78-61.

Eastern Connecticut State: 0-3
Johnson & Wales: 3-1

Statistical Leaders:
Justin Bullock (JWU): 26 points, 7 rebounds
Brian Hogan-Gary (JWU): 20 points, 16 rebounds
Jake Collagan (ECSU): 17 points, 4 assists

Of Note:
A Cory Muckle three-pointer at the 17:01 mark of the first half gave the Warriors a 7-6 lead, but JWU clamped down on defense and didn't allow another point for nearly 10 minutes. Five different Wildcats scored during that stretch with a pair of Brian Hogan-Gary free throws giving the hosts a 25-10 lead.

The lead dipped to nine, but JWU went into the half with a 39-26 margin. Johnson & Wales limited ECSU to 30.3 percent (10-of-33) shooting in the first half and a 35.3 percent (24-of-68) overall.

In the second half, the lead only got under single digits once, 50-49, on a Shawn Gashi layup at the 12:28 mark. It grew to as many as 73-53 on a Hogan-Gary layup with three minutes left.

Justin Bullock paced all players with 26 points – four off his career-high. The Spring Valley, N.Y. native was 5-of-8 from behind the arc as part of JWU's 50 percent rate (9-of-18).

Producing his third-straight double-double was Hogan-Gary with 20 points and 16 rebounds. JWU had a 51-35 rebounding advantage and made more free throws (15-of-17) than the Warriors took (5-of-8).

Jake Collagn led ECSU with 17 points, followed by 15 from Muckle and 14 from Thomas Close.

Up Next:
The Wildcats are on the road Saturday when they face NCAA Division II opponent Staten Island College at 1 p.m.