Men’s Basketball: Seniors lead Huskies in CAA win

Men’s Basketball: Seniors lead Huskies in CAA win

Matthews Arena is many things. It is the oldest ice hockey arena in the world. It is the original home of the Boston Bruins, the Celtics and the Beanpot.

The storied arena, which is currently home to Northeastern’s men’s basketball, has been good to the young team so far this season.

Since moving to Matthews from Solomon Court last season, the Huskies are 12-1 at home including Saturday’s win over Colonial Athletic Association foe UNC Wilmington. The home court advantage may have been just what the Huskies needed after starting the season 0-5 on the road.

The Huskies’ (2-5, 1-0 CAA) senior co-captains Bobby Kelly, Adrian Martinez and Bennet Davis put forth all-around efforts to lift the team past the Seahawks, 58-51.

Kelly gave NU its first lead of the day with a 3-pointer 79 seconds into the game. The guard seemed to be everywhere on the court. He finished the day with 11 points, five assists, three steals and three rebounds in his best all-around performance of the season.

Martinez and Davis each put up 12 points, with Davis adding a career-high seven blocks.

“If I can get a good opportunity, I can jump and block a shot,” Davis said. “That’s basically what I was doing.”

The Husky defense forced 18 Wilmington turnovers that led to 24 Northeastern points. NU turned the ball over just seven times in the game.

“We are handling the ball really well,” said head coach Bill Coen. “We have had low turnover totals so far this season. We did better on the boards and had a big improvement defensively.”

The Huskies pulled down 31 total rebounds, 23 on the defensive end.

Northeastern took a 29-22 lead into halftime but the Seahawks opened the second half with a 10-0 run that erased the Huskies’ advantage. Davis ended the run with a pair of layups and junior forward Mark Washington gave Northeastern the 35-32 lead with his only bucket of the game.

The lead changed hands 12 times in the game, with 10 ties. The final tie came with a little more than two and a half minutes left in the game when the score was knotted at 49. Seahawk’s junior center Jeff Horowitz hit a jumper to even the score.

Northeastern went on a 9-3 run helped by three UNC turnovers to finish the game and earn their second win of the season.

“We were definitely too eager,” said UNC head coach Benny Moss. “[Northeastern] would run the shot clock down and it made us very tentative on offense. We were tentative like I have never seen this season.”

Freshman Matt Janning put up eight points, one assist and one block as he continued his impressive rookie campaign.

The win bumped Northeastern to third place in the CAA, as one of three teams with one conference win.

Tonight Northeastern will take on No. 19 Connecticut at 7 p.m., their third Big East opponent this season, in a battle of the Huskies.

NU has already faced Syracuse and Pittsburgh. The Connecticut Huskies are 7-0 this season with former NU head coach Jim Calhoun in his 21st season at the helm. The two squads met exactly two years ago (Dec. 6, 2004) with UConn topping NU 97-60.

The Huskies will have nearly two weeks off after UConn before they face New Hampshire Dec. 18. It is the only game the team will play at Solomon Court this season.

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