Men’s basketball beats Fairfield in season opener

Sarah Hazard, Senior Writer

On Nov. 5, the Bison men’s basketball team traveled to Bridgeport, Ct. to face Fairfield for their first game of the 2019-2020 season.

After leading for most of the second half, the Bison faced pressure when their 64-49 lead was cut to 64-62 with only 30 seconds left after Fairfield scored 13 unanswered points. However, Walter Ellis ’22 and Andrew Funk ’22 scored four clutch free throws in the final 13 seconds of the game to secure the win in Webster Bank Arena, with a final score of 68-64.

Stat leaders for the night included John Meeks ’21 with 19 points off the bench, Bruce Moore ’20 with 15, Ellis with 11 and Kahliel Spear ’22 with 10 points. Spear also helped secure the win with nine rebounds for the Blue and Orange. Meeks’s point total was a career-high.

The Bison bench played a major factor in the game, accounting for 40 points and 17 rebounds while also connecting on seven of 10 attempts from beyond the arc. As a team, the Bison converted 14 of 17 on free throws and shot 10 for  23 from the 3-point line. Meeks and Ellis played a big part in this, shooting a combined six of eight on 3-point shots. The Orange and Blue shot 40 percent on the court and held the stags to a similar 40.7 shooting average.

“I’m looking forward to going out and competing with my brothers. We fell short last year and we want the championship this year,” Meeks said.

Several other Bison had standout evenings. Center Paul Newman ’21 found himself in foul trouble early, allowing Spear to play a huge role coming off the bench. In addition, Funk and Ben Robertson ’20 both made their first career starts.

With the win, coach Nathan Davis collected his 90th win as the Bison’s head coach. The Bison will look for another win during their home opener as they face the University of Vermont this Sunday at 2 p.m. at Sojka Pavilion.

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