Saints Top Dutchmen, 89-73, Clinching No. 1 Seed in Conference
Feb. 20: Senior captain Josh Sharlow hit his 1000th career point Saturday, helping the St. Lawrence men's basketball team defeat Union College, 89-73 in the Burkman Gymnasium. The Saints have clinched the No. 1 seed going into the Liberty League Tournament.
St. Lawrence ends the regular season with a 14-11 (10-4) record, while Union finishes with a 12-12 (8-6) mark.
Senior captain Andy Hoercher earned a team-high 23 points, shooting 8-of-12 from the floor, including 3-of-6 from the arc. Sharlow and sophomore Ralph Temgoua followed with 16 points and a game-high nine assists a piece. Sophomore Ralph Temgoua also racked up a game-high 11 rebounds, while Sharlow was on fire from the arc shooting 100%. Union's Keven Donohue led his team with 24 points off 7-of-15 shooting, supported by Joey Lokitis who tallied 22. Donohue and teammate Covucci also totaled a team-high seven rebounds.
In the first half, both teams were dangerous from the arc, with the Saints hitting five three-pointers and the Dutchmen hitting four in the opening ten minutes. First-year Nick Meunier had Saints' fans on their feet within the first minute of the frame as he slam-dunked the ball off a pass from Temgoua. Sophomore Garrett Sharlow continued to increase the excitement as he hit a three, but Union's Lokitis followed suit to tie the score at five. With 16:51 on the clock, Burkman Gymnasium erupted as Temgoua passed the ball to Josh Sharlow who calmly drained a three to pick up his 1000th career point. Shots continued to fly for both sides from beyond the arc, but with 9:21 on the clock, St. Lawrence had earned a 10 point lead (28-18).
Union managed to cut the deficit to eight as Rusmir Dzanko chipped one in from underneath, but Temgoua and Sharlow pushed the Saints advantage up to 12 (32-20). Things got interesting when the Dutchmen moved out on a 5-0 run, due to consistent shooting from Covucci and Donohue, climbing back to within five points of the Saints. Although St. Lawrence maintained their lead, Union kept them from entering a double-digit margin. Dzanko was solid in the last two minutes of the game, helping the Dutchmen cut the deficit to seven as the half came to a close (45-38).
The second half fared well for the Saints who grabbed a lot of offensive momentum. Within the opening two minutes of the frame, St. Lawrence had earned a double-digit advantage (50-40). With 14:40 on the clock, Union was able to crawl back to within eight points as Dzanko hit a jump-shot, but that was the closest the Dutchmen got to matching the score. Garrett Sharlow tipped one in from underneath to fuel an 11-0 run for his team and with 11:10 on the clock, the Saints led by 17 points (68-51). Exactly a minute later, Scarlet and Brown fans went crazy as sophomore Terry Parham lobbed the ball to Meunier who slam dunked the ball for an impressive alley-oop. Roughly three minutes later, Hoercher hit back-to-back layups to give St. Lawrence its largest lead of the game with a 20 point advantage (79-59). It looked like Union might make a comeback when two threes from Lokitis and a dunk from Donohue brought the Dutchmen within 11 points of the Saints. However, consecutive threes from Garrett Sharlow and Hoercher with just over two minutes left in regulation closed the door on any hopes of that happening. Union was able to pick up some last minute points off foul-shots, but the Saints bench players finished what the rest of their team had started, securing the 89-73 victory.
The Saints will host Union College for a rematch in the first game of the Liberty League Tournament. Tip-off has yet to be determined.