Albany, NY – The Sage Colleges' men's basketball team hosted the Golden Eagles of St. Joseph's College (LI) on Saturday afternoon. The Gators got a double-double from junior forward Kai Deans (Miami, FL/Monsignor Pace) with 21 points and 15 rebounds as they beat St. Joe's, 69-59. With the win, Sage improves to 13-8 overall and 9-5 in the league, tying the program's record for most wins in a season at 13, a feat the Gators have now achieved three times in the five young years of the program. St. Joe's drops to 5-15 overall and 4-9 in the league.
Sage led 32-31 at the break before a strong run by St. Joe's as they game was tied at 34-34 with 17:37 left. SJC went on a 6-0 run paced by the play of Darryl Charles, Cody Lohsen, and Andy Laurent as they each tallied jumpers in a two minute span. The two teams exchanged baskets and leads until the 12th tie of the day at 57-57 at 3:57 as Sean McCarthy hit a layup.
Sage's graduate performer Jeff Stopera (Scotia, NY/Scotia Glenville) added back to back free throws at 3:42 and the Gators would use that momentum to hold on for the key conference win.
For the game, Deans had a double-double on 21 points and 15 rebounds with three steals. Junior guard Troy Nwanna (Washington, DC/Mercersburg Academy) added 11 points with nine rebounds, while junior Jacob Sopchak (Rhinebeck, NY/Rhinebeck) tallied 11 points with four blocks. Rookie Marcus Patterson (Bronx, NY/Mount Saint Michael Academy) added 10 points in the start for the Gators, while rookie Eric Samuel (New York, NY/Berkshire School) had six blocked shots to help the Gators combine for 12 blocked shots in the action, to tie the single-game record set on Jan. 21, 2010 in the Gators' win over Bard College.
SJC's junior forward Darryl Charles (Middletown, NY/Poughkeepsie) had a double-double with his 23 points and 12 rebounds, while junior Sean McCarthy (Kings Park, NY/Kings Park) had 13 points. Rookie guard Andy Laurent (Amityville, NY/Amityville) had 12 points and seven boards for the Golden Eagles.
Sage held a 48-36 edge on the boards and limited SJC to a 33.9% (21-62) effort from the floor.
The Gators will be back in action on February 13 hosting Maritime College in a 7 p.m. Skyline Conference game held in Kahl Gym. St. Joseph's College (LI) will be in action on February 11 travelling to NYU-Poly for a 7p.m. Skyline Conference game.