PROVIDENCE, RI – After squandering an 18-point second-half lead, the Johnson & Wales University men's basketball team regrouped to beat Suffolk University. The Wildcats handed the Rams a 67-63 Great Northeast Athletic Conference defeat on Wednesday.
JWU extended its lead to 48-30 thanks to a Bryan Davis layup at the 14:20 mark of the second half. The Wildcats were held to just a pair of Justin Bullock three-pointers over the next nine minutes as the Rams pulled within 57-54.
Max Bonney-Liles gave Suffolk its first and only lead of the game with a three-pointer with 2:37 remaining. He'd answer Nate Patenaude's layup with a basket of his own to knot the game at 63-63 with just over a minute remaining.
With the shot clock winding down, Bullock hit a runner in the lane to put JWU up 65-63 with 36 seconds remaining. He'd knock down a pair of free throws with eight seconds left to seal the victory.
Less than five minutes into the first half the Wildcats had an 11-0 lead on a Chris Lugo jumper. Suffolk got the lead down to 25-22 with 5:15 left on a Will Rowe lay in, but JWU closed the half on an 11-4 run to go into the half up 36-26.
JWU limited the Rams to 33.3 percent shooting in the first half, but the visitors mounted their comeback by shooting 17-of-32 in the second stanza.
Topping all players was Bullock as he dropped in 22 points while Patenaude added 17. Brian Hogan-Gary recorded his fourth double-double in a row with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Bonney-Liles led the way for the Rams, scoring a team-high 17 points. Thomas Duffy contributed 15 and Rowe pulled in a game-high 14 rebounds.
JWU returns to the Wildcat Center Saturday to face Saint Joseph (Conn.) at 3 p.m.