No. 20 Babson Holds off Bears in Home Finale

Kevin Alvarez
Kevin Alvarez

NEW LONDON, Conn. –  Junior Joey Flannery led all scorers with 22 points while sophomore Nick Comenale added a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds as No. 20 Babson wrapped up the New England Women's and Men's regular season title and secured the top-seed in next week's conference tournament with a 80-73 win over Coast Guard in the Bears final home game of the season.

Babson won its eighth straight to improve to 18-5 overall and 12-1 in conference play while the Bears dropped to 10-13 overall and 4-9 in the NEWMAC.

Coast Guard can still qualify for the conference tournament by winning at Springfield on Saturday in the regular season finale and the Bears would also need Wheaton to beat Emerson giving Coast Guard the fifth and final seed.

Comenale was 5 of 7 from 3-point range and 6 of 9 total from the field while Flannery was 9 of 9 from the foul line.

Junior Sam Bohmiller added 14 points for Babson while sophomore Bradley Jacks finished with 12 points in the win. Junior Charlie Rice had a game-high 12 rebounds for the Beavers.

Senior Kevin Alvarez led Coast Guard with 17 points including the 900th of his career, finishing the night with exactly 900 career points while sophomores Darius Adams (15), Micah Baldez (12) and Ethan Boose (10) all scored in double figures for the Bears. Alvarez added a game-high six assists while Baldez, Adams and Boose each had eight rebounds to lead Coast Guard.

The Beavers were 24 for 59 (40.7 percent) from the field in the win including 8 of 18 from behind the arc while Coast Guard finished 26 of 68 (38.2 percent) from the floor hitting 7 of 24 from 3-point range.

Babson scored the first eight points of the game and led 18-5 in the first five minutes of play. The Beavers hit 11 of their first 15 field goal attempts pushing the lead to 27-8 with 10:49 left in the first half. Coast Guard was just 3 of 18 from the floor to start the game.

Coast Guard would use a 9-2 run to cut the deficit to 36-26 following a 3-pointer by Baldez with 1:27 left in the half. Babson led 38-26 at halftime.

The Beavers were 15 of 33 (45.5 percent) from the field in the first half including 3 of 9 from behind the arc while Coast Guard was 11 of 37 (29.7 percent) hitting 3 of 16 from 3-point range in the first 20 minutes.

Coast Guard scored the first four points of the second half to cut the deficit to just eight, 38-30 with 18:44 left.

Comenale knocked down consecutive 3-pointers to close a 10-1 run as Babson pushed the lead to 59-41 with 11:44 left.

The Bears responded with a 13-3 spurt cutting the lead to 62-54 on a layup by Adams with 8:29 remaining.

Junior Adrian Chuquillangui got the Bears to within six at 77-71 with 46 seconds left, but the Beavers held on for the win.

The Bears close out the regular season on Saturday at Springfield at 2:00.

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