ROSEMONT, Pa. – Exceptional three-point defense and a big second-half run set the Ursinus College men's basketball team on the winning path in its first game of the new year.
Senior Zach Quattro poured in a game-high 20 points as the Bears snapped a three-game road losing streak with a 77-59 romp at Rosemont on Wednesday night. Ursinus (6-5) bounced back from a devastating loss at Catholic four days prior by limiting the Ravens to a 4-for-24 performance from beyond the arc and breaking open a tight affair with a 17-4 burst at the 12-minute mark of the second half.
Neither side led by more than five in a first frame interspersed with six ties and three lead changes, and the Bears were ahead by only six after Nasir Cassel connected on a rare 3-ball to pull the Ravens (6-4) within 49-43 with 12:16 to play. It was all Ursinus from there.
The Bears forced misses on nine of Rosemont's next ten field-goal attempts and capitalized on their own end, starting with a pair of triples by junior Eric Williams Jr. sandwiched around a free throw by senior Brian Rafferty. The Ravens found a brief reprieve with a basket, but Quattro scored inside on back-to-back trips and sophomore Ryan McTamney buried a 3-pointer of his own to expand the spread to 63-45 with 6:47 remaining. The advantage grew as large as 23 before the final buzzer.
McTamney and junior Zack Muredda each contributed 12 points and combined for 10-for-14 shooting from the floor, with the latter making all but one of his six tries.
Ursinus shot an even 50.0 percent from the field (28 for 56), but its best work was done on the glass and on the defensive end. The visitors snagged 14 offensive rebounds as part of a 46-28 demolition on the boards, and all but one of the team's 14 participants secured at least one carom. It was a balanced effort up and down the lineup, with sophomore Shane Stark snaring 11 and senior Remi Janicot six, and no other getting more than four. Stark, who came in second in the Centennial Conference in rebounding, hauled in at least ten for the fourth time this season.
The Bears got after the Ravens from the opening tip, holding the hosts to just four makes from long range and a 34.8-percent overall output.
Janicot was 7 of 10 from the free-throw line en route to a nine-point night, while Rafferty handed out six assists to move within two of sixth place in CC history.
Wednesday's win was redemptive for Ursinus, which squandered a 14-point lead inside the final five minutes in a 71-69 stunner to the Ravens last season.
The Bears get back to conference action with a tough matchup at Johns Hopkins on Saturday.