North Dartmouth, Mass. - The Worcester State University Lancers recorded a 103-93 overtime triumph over the Trinity College Bantams in the opening round of the Hampton Inn Classic hosted by Mass.-Dartmouth. In the season opener for both squads, the Lancers move to the championship where they will take on Wheaton tomorrow at 6 o’clock. The Bantams will play the Mass.-Dartmouth Corsairs in the consolation at 4 p.m.
With Trinity clinging to the 10-8 advantage at the 14:08 mark in the first period, the Bantams used an 11-3 spurt to open up a 22-11 game nearly four minutes later, including a trio of threes with two by sophomore Hart Glieldman (New York, N.Y.). Trinity maintained double-digits for the remainder of the stanza and led by as many as 17 twice. The Bantams led, 40-23, with 2:23 on the clock, when Worcester State outscored itsopponents, 9-4, to trail 44-32 at the intermission. In the first half, nearly one third of Trinity’s offense came by way of the three-point arc as they netted eight of nine for 36 of their 44 points. The Lancers stayed in the game with some strong scoring from the charity stripe with a 13-for-15 line from the free throw line (87 percent).
The Lancers first four shots from the field as senior Kyle Ferreira (Westport, Mass.) and freshman Alex Lopez (Springfield, Mass.) were a spark with two trey’s each to trail by three (46-43), but the Bantams went on an 11-3 run for a 57-47 point advantage five minutes into the game. Worcester State got as close as six on two occasions and five at the 10 minute mark, but Trinity used a cold shooting streak to go back up by 12 with 7:57 left in regulation (72-60). The Lancers then parlayed four Bantam miscues into six points, converted four lay-ups and went on a 13-2 surge to make the score a 74-73 game with 4:20 to play. Trinity freshman Jaquinn Starks (Hartford, Conn.) netted a field goal before Worcester State responded with two points in the paint each for the 79-78 lead. Starks responded with three consecutive free throws to take the two-point edge with 2:03 to play (81-79), but a Lancer layup with 1:50 on the clock and the back-end of a bonus chance with 48 ticks remaining gave Worcester State an 82-81 advantage. After Trinity senior Mick DiStasio (Yarmouth, Maine) nailed a three pointer with 33 seconds on the clock, Hunter hurled up a lay-up to help force the extra session with the game knotted 84-84.
Bantam second-year Steve Spirou (Pelham, N.H.) and DiStasio put in field goals to help jump-start Trinity in the first minute of overtime for the 88-85 edge, but from there the Lancers used hot shooting from beyond the arc to put the game away. Sparked by three consecutive three pointers by Ferreira, the Lancers used a 15-4 run to open up a 100-89 margin with 49 seconds to play. The Bantams also turned the ball over twice and missed a pair of chances from the field. Starks had a team-best 21 points, with an 8-for-9 tally from the free throw line, as Gliedman and DiStasio ended the game with 14 and 13 points, respectively. Freshman Shay Ajayi (Brooklyn, N.Y.) had a squad-high seven boards as sophomore guard Mickel Simpson (Woburn, Mass.) came off the bench to score 12. The Lancers finished the contest leading in points in the paint (40-34), points off turnovers (35-16), steals (15-4), boards (33-28) and second chance points (13-5). WSU also shot 54 percent for the contest (34-for-63) – including 63 percent in the final stanza alone (20-for-35). The Bantams bench outscored their counterparts 33-3 and the squad also connected for a blistering 59 percent for the contest (34-for-58).