Burlington, V.T. (NEWS10) — Vermont pulls away from UAlbany men’s basketball in the second half, to win 74-66 despite 21 points from Antonio Rizzuto.
- Antonio Rizzuto scored 21 points on 7-12 shooting, including 6-10 from three
- CJ Kelly scored 14 points with five rebounds and four assists
- Both teams shot over 50% in the first half
- Vermont shot 9-9 from the free-throw line in the first half
- Vermont outscored UAlbany 32-24 in the paint
- Three Great Danes and three Catamounts each scored in double-figures
“I thought we had a solid weekend,” head coach Will Brown said. “There’s a lot of pressure being put on Taylor and Doles right now with Lulka out. We wasted some possessions tonight, and we have to find the balance of attacking and not trying to create something out of nothing. Defensively, we didn’t want Stef Smith and Ryan Davis beat us. We wanted to make their supporting cast make shots and make plays. It worked to our advantage last night, but today Ben Shungu really hurt us in the first half, and in the second half, Justin Mazzulla made some threes. We’re going to need to find at least one more guy in that frontcourt that can step up and help us.”
How it Happened
- Picking up where he left off last night when he scored 27 points, CJ Kelly opened the game with a three-pointer to give UAlbany a quick, early lead. In a preview of things to come, Antonio Rizzuto hit UAlbany’s second-straight three to push the advantage to four. Rizzuto would finish the night shooting 6-10 from deep.
- With 10:19 to go in the first, UAlbany took its biggest lead of the night, seven points, following another three from Rizzuto. Vermont had closed within two before UAlbany pulled away on a 7-2 run. The Catamounts responded by scoring eight unanswered, taking their first lead, 22-21, with 8:09 left before halftime.
- A three-pointer from JoJo Anderson with 3:04 left in the first put UAlbany back up five, only to see Vermont close the half on a 10-5 run to tie the game at 39. Kelly and Rizzuto each scored 14 points in the first half.
- Vermont opened the second half on an 8-0 run, taking a 47-39 lead with 15:46 remaining. The Catamounts maintained a mid-single-digits lead for most of the second half. A brief 5-0 run for the Great Danes cut the lead to two with 7:07 to go, but the Catamounts pulled away again and went on to win by a final score of 74-66.
- Rizzuto finished with a game-high 21 points, matching Vermont’s Ben Shungu’s scoring output. Kelly finished with 14 points, five rebounds and five assists. Vermont outscored UAlbany 32-24 in the paint, and outrebounded the Great Danes 36-25. The Catamounts also outscored UAlbany 18-8 at the line, including shooting a perfect 9-9 from the stripe in the first half.
UAlbany’s next scheduled game is January 16 vs. America East newcomer NJIT at SEFCU Arena.
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