BABSON PARK, Mass. – Despite a 39-point effort from Thomas Duffy, Suffolk men's basketball came out on the wrong side of a 94-91 overtime decision Sunday afternoon as the Rams fell to UMaine Farmington in the consolation contest of the Babson Invitational at Staake Gymnasium.
SCORE: Suffolk 94 | UMaine Farmington 91
RECORDS: Suffolk (2-2) | UMaine Farmington (1-1)
HOW IT HAPPENED
In a game which featured 16 lead changes, UMF flipped a 10-9 Suffolk game into a 21-10 contest in the Beavers favor behind 12 unanswered points early on.
The Rams had to play catch up and they relied on the hot hands of Duffy to do so as the Farifield, Connecticut native went on his own 8-0 spurt to pull within three, 21-18, and force Farmington to take a timeout with 11:40 to go in the first frame.
Out of the break, the underclassmen of Alex Jacovides and Max Bonney-Liles heated up from downtown to turn the tides in Suffolk's favor, 29-25. Over the stretch, Jacovides poured in eight points, while Bonney-Liles connected from behind-the-arc once.
The Beavers leveled the playing field at 29-all with 7:01 on the clock. The Rams responded to the stretch with buckets from Jacovides, Duffy and Brendan Mulson to remain in front.
Suffolk slowed down and Farmington heated up as it flipped the switch in its favor over the next two minutes to grab a 37-35 edge.
Senior Michael Hagopian traded a pair treys with Beavers buckets for a two lead exchanges that saw Suffolk go up, 41-39, with 3:12 to play in the first half.
Hagopian's second hoop of the day would be the Rams second to last of the first set of 20 minutes as the blue-and-gold went cold from the field. The Beavers took advantage of the Suffolk scoring lull, outscoring the Rams, 10-2 over the final three minutes to send Suffolk into the locker room down 49-43 at the half.
Duffy teamed up with George Grillakis to spearhead Suffolk's comeback. The junior, sophomore duo outscored the Beavers, 16-6, to put the Rams in front once again, 56-55. From there, Duffy put away a triple and Bonney-Liles followed suit with one his own to lengthen the Rams advantage to 61-55 with 7:14 left in regulation.
Farmington came back once again, rattling off 11 unanswered points to put the Rams in a five-point, 66-61, hole.
Duffy once again anchored the comeback with help from Bonney-Liles and Grillakis knotting the score at 79-all at the 1:32 minute mark.
Anthony Owens made the front end of a trip to the foul line with just over a minute left on the clock in the second with Riley Robinson putting away a jumper with 19 seconds to go.
Ten seconds later, Duffy pulled up from NBA range at the top of the key with confidence to tie the game at 82-82.
Jeff Juron called a timeout to talk things over and defend the Beavers last possession of regulation, which saw Robinson miss a last second jump shot to force the extra session.
Duffy started things off the same way he finished the second half with a long ball from the top of the key. The teams would exchange the lead three times from there with the Beavers go in front for good with 38 seconds to go, 89-87.
A costly Rams' turnover turned into two points for Farmington that made it at three-point game with 25 seconds remaining.
A Duffy layup was followed by a set of freebies by Isaac Witham to keep the Beavers three-point cushion intact.
Connor Byrne showed composure at the line for the blue-and-gold with a set of free throws with 3 seconds to go, but a late foul sent Witham to line for the Beavers and he won the game for Farmington there, 94-91.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Duffy's day ended with 39 points on a 14-for-25 performance from the floor, 5-for-13 showing from downtown and a perfect 6-for-6 connection rate at the charity stripe. He supplied four rebounds, two assists and one steal.
- Bonney-Liles provided 14 points off the bench with a 5-for-9 effort from the field, including a 4-for-8 performance from downtown. He added four caroms, two assists, two blocks and one swat.
- Grillakis and Jacovides each recorded 10 points. Grillakis shot 4-for-7 from the field with four rebounds, four dimes, one swat and one takeaway, while Jacovides went 4-for-6 from the floor and pulled down four caroms.
- As a team, Suffolk shot 42.3 percent (33-78) from the field, 37.2 percent (16-43) from beyond-the-arc and 75.0 (9-12) at the line.
- The Rams won the battle on the boards, 39-38.
- Suffolk and Maine Farmington met for the first time.
- The Rams played their first overtime game of the season and first since defeating Mount Ida, 87-84, in an extra session, Feb. 17, 2018.
- Suffolk played its second OT game in the Jeff Juron and moved to 1-1 when playing more than 40 minutes under Juron's guidance.
- Duffy's 39 points are the most in the Juron era, displacing Hagopian's previously set 36-point mark tallied in an 89-62 win at Rivier Feb. 1, 2017.
- Duffy's 39 points are the most by a Ram since Sam Nwandike produced 39 in a thrilling 84-82 win over Anna Maria, Dec. 4, 2014.
- Duffy had personal-bests in points (39), field goals made (14), field goals attempted (25), three-point field goals made (5) and three-point field goals attempted (13).
- Bonney-Liles tallied career-highs in points (14), field goals made (5), field goals attempted (9), three-point field goals attempted (8), rebounds (4) and blocks (2), while matching personal-bests in three-point field goals made (4), assists (2) and steals (1).
- Jacovides registered season-highs in points (10) and rebounds (4).
- Byrne collected a personal-best six rebounds.
WHAT'S TO COME?
Suffolk takes the week off for the Thanksgiving Day recess and will return to action Tuesday, Nov. 27 when the Rams welcome Boston Commons neighbor Emerson to Regan Gymnasium for a 7 p.m. contest.