February 14, 2010

No. 21 men bounce back with 83-71 win over Chicago as five score in double figures

WALTHAM, Mass. - The 21st-ranked Brandeis University men's basketball team put five different players in double figures today as the Judges topped the University of Chicago Maroons, 83-71, in Red Auerbach Arena. With the win, the Judges improve to 17-5 on the season, 7-4 in the University Athletic Association, while the Maroons fall to 11-11, 5-6 in the UAA.

Brandeis earned the win by shooting over 50 percent (28-54, 51.9%) from the floor for the second time in three games and the fifth time overall this season. Sophomore sharp-shooter Vytas Kriskus (Kvedarna, Lithuania/Holderness School) came off the bench to lead the Judges with 20 points in 26 minutes. He connected on 7-of-9 overall, 4-of-5 from beyond the arc and 2-of-2 from the line while also grabbing five rebounds. Sophomore Tyrone Hughes (Dorchester, Mass./Taft School) and senior Kenny Small (Stratford, Conn./Stratford) each had 14 points and a team-high three assists. Hughes helped his cause by hitting all eight of his free-throw attempts.

Senior forward Terrell Hollins (Springfield, Mass./Longmeadow) had 12 points and a game-high 13 rebounds, including six on the offensive glass, to record his eighth double-double in the past nine games and his UAA-leading 11th of the season. Hollins also had a game-high four steals, tying a career-high. Classmate Andre Roberson (Springfield, Mass./Wilbraham & Monson Acad.) was the fifth Brandeis player in double figures with 10 points while also grabbing six rebounds.

The Judges outrebounded Chicago, 35-27, and outscored the Maroons in points off turnovers (15-7) and second-chance points (11-4). Brandeis also outscored UC at the free-throw line by a 23-2 margin.

Chicago got a game-high 25 points from senior forward John Kinsella (Chicago, Ill./University High). Kinsella, who scored 15 points in the second half, connected on 9-of-15 overall, including 7-of-10 from beyond the arc, one trifecta short of the school record. Classmate and guard Jake Pancratz (Schaumburg, Ill./Schaumburg) added 19 points and had a game-high six assists. He hit 7-of-15 from the field and 4-of-11 from downtown. Pancratz and sophomore Tom Williams (Cincinnati, Ohio/St. Xavier) tied for team-high honors with five rebounds each.

The lead went back and forth over the first eight-plus minutes, with four ties and five lead changes. With the game tied, 14-14, Roberson scored on a jumper off a defensive rebound at the 10:15 mark to give Brandeis the lead for good. His bucket sparked a 12-3 run over a span of five minutes that included a pair of traditional three-point plays by Small and Hollins and a steal and dunk by Small. With Chicago trailing, 26-17 with 5:19 on the clock, Kinsella hit back-to-back to get the visitors within three points just a minute later. Brandeis answered with a 15-5 string before UC's Marek Kowaleski (Burbank, Ill./Reavis) banked one home from deep at the buzzer to make it a 41-31 Brandeis lead at halftime. Kriskus, Kinsella and Pancratz all had 10 first-half points.

Chicago opened the second half with an 11-5 run over the first 5:49 to close within four points at 46-42 on a Kinsella long bomb. The Judges stopped the bleeding with a Hollins put-back and two Hughes free throws to push the lead back to eight, and though the Maroons were as close as five points on five other occasions, they could not get over the hump as Brandeis held on for the win.

The Judges are next in action with their final UAA road trip of the season next Friday night at 8 p.m. at the University of Rochester, while Chicago takes on Carnegie Mellon at the same time to kick off a three-game season-ending homestand.

BOX SCORE