Babson Park, Mass. - Sophomore guard Brian Ford (Bronx, N.Y.) scored a game-high 27 points, 18 in the second half, and sank a pair of key free throws down the stretch to lead the visiting Trinity College Bantams to a 72-71 win over the Babson College Beavers in men's basketball action this afternoon at Staake Gymnasium. Trinity improves to 2-3, while Babson drops to 4-1.
Babson took the early lead and controlled the game for the first eight minutes until Ford scored a three-pointer for the Bantams to tie the game at nine with just under twelve minutes to play in the first half. The Beavers got the momentum back with five minutes left in the half on a 7-0 run and were able to enter halftime up 36-29.
The Beavers kept the lead in the second half until Ford struck again with another three-pointer to put the Bantams up with just over 11 minutes left to play. In a thrilling game that featured four ties, and seven lead changes, Trinity eventually led by five, 68-63, with just under three minutes remaining. Babson answered with four straight points to get to within one, but Trinity sophomore guard Salah Abdo (Chelsea, Mass.) hit a jumper to push the Bantams' lead back to three with 21 ticks left. The Beavers once again got to within one point on a lay-up by first-year Lambros Papalambros (Quincy, Mass.), but Trinity sealed the win when Ford scored his two free throws to make it 72-69 with four seconds remaining. Babson missed a three before making a lay-up as the buzzer sounded for the 72-71 final.
Trinity senior forward Aaron Westbrooks (Dublin, Ireland) added twelve points, while senior forward Pat Belniak (Sutton, Mass.) led the team with nineteen points and eight rebounds. Senior captain Zach Etten (Hollis, N.H.) also shined with eleven points, nine rebounds, three assists, and four steals, as he became the 22nd player in program history to reach 1000 career points for the Beavers. Ford shot 10-for-12 from the floor, five of which were three-pointers. (led the Bantams in rebounding with eight and also adding a team-high four assists.
For the Beavers, Belniak shot 6-for-12 from the floor and 7-for-7 from the line while collecting six offensive rebounds. Seven of Etten's team-high nine rebounds were on the defensive end and he also led the Beavers with four steals and three assists. First-year Marcus Edwards (East Hampton, N.Y.) added eleven points and four rebounds in defeat for Babson.