ROCHESTER, N.Y. — The Washington and Lee men's basketball team used a 15-2 run midway through the second half to pull away for a 66-56 victory over Suffolk at the Chuck Resler Tournament hosted by the University of Rochester on Friday.
The Generals (1-1) led by three, 40-37, with 11:35 left in the contest before breaking the game open. Back-to-back layups by junior forward Clayton Murtha (Dallas, Texas/Highland Park) extended the advantage to seven (44-37) with 9:37 left to play. After a layup by senior guard Andy Kleinlein (Chesterfield, Mo./Chaminade College Prep) and two free throws by first-year guard Trey Lewis (Houston, Texas/St. John's School), W&L led by double-digits, 48-37, with 8:29 left on the clock.
Suffolk (0-2) sophomore forward Steven DiPrizio sunk two free throws on the next possession, but sophomore guard Devin Kearns (Cibolo, Texas/Samuel Clemens) drained a jumper to put the margin back at 11, 50-39, with 7:57 left on the clock. First-year forward Connor MacIsaac (Winthrop, Mass./The Rivers School) made two from the foul line, and junior forward Nicholas George (Charleston, W. Va./Charleston Catholic) capped the 15-2 spurt with a three-pointer to give W&L a 55-39 lead with 6:26 left in the game.
The Blue and White led 62-45 at the 3:33 mark, but the Rams scored 10 straight points to trim the margin to six (62-56) with 1:04 left in the game. Sophomore forward Roy McMillan (Raleigh, N.C./Broughton) made a layup on the next W&L possession, and then a stop and a bucket by Murtha with 15 seconds left on the clock gave the Generals a 66-56 victory.
W&L shot 54.3 percent from the floor (25-of-46) and 54.5 percent (6-of-11) from long range. The team also made 10-of-13 free throws. Suffolk was held to 39.2 percent (20-of-51) from the field and 19.0 percent (4-of-21) from downtown. The Rams only connected on 12-of-21 (57.1 percent) from the charity stripe.
Murtha and George each had 16 points to lead the Generals. Murtha also grabbed seven rebounds and had two assists. George collected his 16 points by shooting 6-of-9 overall and 4-of-5 from long range. McMillan registered nine points on 4-of-5 shooting, but was limited to just 13 minutes due to foul trouble.
DiPrizio led the Rams with 14 points on 4-of-8 from the field. First-year guard George Grillakis had seven points and five rebounds off the bench.
The Blue and White jumped out to a 15-5 lead in the opening six minutes of the game. During the run, McMillan recorded five points and one assist, while Murtha netted five points.
W&L was leading 21-14 with 9:35 left in the half, but the Rams went on a 5-0 surge to cut the margin to two (21-19) by the 7:53 mark. A triple by George on the ensuing possession pushed the advantage back to five, 24-19. The teams would trade baskets over the final seven minutes of the stanza to give the Generals a 29-25 lead at intermission.
The victory ended an 11-game losing streak for W&L dating back to January 27, 2016. The Generals will play in the championship game of the Chuck Resler Basketball Tournament on Saturday at 6:00 pm. W&L will play the winner of the game between Rochester and Alfred, which takes place later on Friday at 6:00 pm.
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