Men's basketball leads wire-to-wire in NESCAC win over Wesleyan

Patrick Mogan '23 (Josh McKee photo)
Patrick Mogan '23 (Josh McKee photo)

Hamilton College scored the first seven points and the Continentals led the whole game in a 78-67 NESCAC win over the Wesleyan University Cardinals at Hamilton's Margaret Bundy Scott Field House on Sunday afternoon.

The Continentals (14-6, 2-4 NESCAC) won their first conference game since Jan. 10. Hamilton shot 50 percent from the floor, scored 23 fast-break points and held a 45-19 advantage in bench points.

Wesleyan (13-7, 2-4) lost for the second time in three days. The Cardinals committed 18 turnovers and shot just 35.8 percent from the field including 6 of 29 from 3-point range.

Kena Gilmour '20 led the Continentals with 16 points and added six rebounds and three assists. Patrick Mogan '23 made all six of his shot attempts and finished with 14 points in 19 minutes off the bench. Elliott Tirbaso '22 was a perfect 3 of 3 from beyond the arc and ended up with 13 points. Fellow reserve Conner Rood '23 chipped in nine points, Eric Anderson '22 added eight points and seven boards, and Sayo Denloye '20 handed out six assists.

Antone Walker paced Wesleyan with a game-high 21 points. Gabe Ravetz drained four 3-pointers in the second half and finished with 14 points and six rebounds. Jordan James scored 14 points before he fouled out with 8:43 left in the second half. Shackylle Dezonie dropped in 11 points and Preston Maccoux contributed six boards and three assists.

Gilmour opened the game with a pair of driving layups and passed to Mark Lutz '20 for a 3-pointer and a 7-0 lead three minutes in. After a jumper by Walker put the Cardinals on the board, Anderson nailed a 3-pointer and Mogan added a jumper for a 12-2 advantage about five minutes into the first half.

Hamilton increased its lead to a 14-point cushion thanks to another 7-0 run. Mogan swished a desperation three from the left corner just before the shot clock expired and threw a long outlet pass to Nick Osarenren '22 for a fast-break dunk. A jumper by Gilmour made it 21-7 with 10:42 remaining.

Wesleyan didn't get closer than eight points the rest of the half. The Continentals went up by 15 at 34-19 on a trifecta from the left corner by Tirbaso with 2:39 to go. Hamilton took a 34-22 lead into the break.

Gabe Millstein's 3-pointer from the left corner pulled the Cardinals within six at 46-40 with 11:45 left. Wesleyan didn't get any closer as the Continentals responded with a 10-0 spurt and led comfortably the rest of the way. Mogan made a turnaround jumper in the lane, Tirbaso swished a 3-pointer, Rood came up with a steal and fed Osarenren for a dunk, and Tirbaso knocked down another 3-pointer from the left corner for a 56-40 advantage with 9:12 remaining.

Hamilton took its largest lead of 19 points at 62-43 on two Rood free throws with 6:21 to go, and Rood's 3-pointer from the right corner made it 65-46 with 5:40 left. The Continentals sealed the victory by going 6-for-8 at the line in the final 66 seconds.

Hamilton goes back on the road for a NESCAC game at Colby College (18-1, 6-1) on Friday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m.