STONY BROOK, NY (November 18, 2012) – The Sacred Heart men's basketball was down 58-46 with just over five minutes to play at Stony Brook but closed out the game on an 18-4 run fueled by senior Shane Gibson (Killingly, CT) to steal a 64-62 win at Pritchard Gymnasium. Gibson made four-straight shots including a pair of three's in the closing minutes to score the final 11 points for the Pioneers as they even their record at 2-2.
SHU junior Louis Montes (Brockton, MA) scored a game-high 20 points and just missed his third double double of the young season with nine rebounds. Sophomore Phil Gaetano (Wallingford, CT) dished out a career-high 10 assists and matched his career high with five rebounds.
The Pioneers shot 46.2 percent (24-52) but turned it over 13 times to just five for Stony Brook. The Seawolves shot just 32.7 percent (18-55) in the loss. Gibson finished with 14 points, all coming in the second half.
Stony Brook (3-1) came in looking for their first-ever 4-0 start during their Division I era and led by as many as 14 points in the second half. The Seawolves took a 12-point lead on an Eric McAlister put-back with 5:07 left but would not hit another shot the rest of the way, settling for just four free throws down the stretch. The loss snapped a 15-game winning streak in Pritchard Gymnasium for the Seawolves.
Sacred Heart opened the game falling behind 9-0, missing their first five shots before r-sophomore Steve Glowiak (New Britain, CT) ended the drought at 14:35 with a three. SHU put together a 14-4 run over the next six minutes, shaking off some off the offensive rust to tie the game. Glowiak came off a high screen to bury his second three at 9:12 to pull the Pioneers within 14-12 and a pair of Montes free throws at 8:20 knotted the game a 14-14.
Stony Brook's Marcus Rouse and SHU's Nick Greenbacker (Coventry, CT) exchanged three's to make it 19-19 with 4:33 left. After a SBU free throw, Sacred Heart took their first lead of the game at 3:41 when Gaetano hit Montes on the break of an easy lay-in, 21-20. The SHU lead lasted all of 18 seconds as Rouse buried his second three. Montes pulled SHU back even at 23-23 on a put back but the Pioneers went stone cold again as Stony Brook used a 6-0 spurt out of the final media time-out of the half to lead 29-23 at the break.
Despite jumping out to a 9-0 lead to start the game, the Seawolves struggled on offense shooting 36.7 percent while making just three of 10 at the free throw line. SHU turned it over 11 times to just three for Stony Brook over the first 20 minutes.
Three-point makes by McAlister and Anthony Jackson helped Stony Brook build their lead to 40-27 in the opening minutes of the second half. SHU's Gibson, who did not start and played just a minute in the first half due to a team rules violation, got his first points at 13:32, hitting a long three to cut the lead to 41-32.
Gibson's three got SHU off on a 7-0 spurt with senior Justin Swidowski (Cinnaminson, NJ) scoring twice inside to pull the Pioneers within 43-38 with just under 10 to play. Rouse bookended a pair of three's around five free throws to give Stony Brook its largest lead of the afternoon at 54-40 with 7:42 left to play.
After McAlister's lay-in at 5:07, SHU went to work and chipped away to set up Gibson's flash-bang finish. Glowiak buried his third three at 4:12 to cut it under double digits, 58-51. Two SBU free throws pushed it back to nine but Montes scored his final points of the day on a jumper at 3:31.
Gibson went to work out of the final media time-out at 3:26 and when it was all said and done, the senior guard hit four-straight to his team to their second comeback win this season. Consecutive three's at 2:28 and 1:47 put the Pioneers down just one, 60-59. After a pair of Rouse free throws pushed it back to three, Gibson drilled a baseline jumper on the next possession to pull within 62-61 with 1:06 left.
A stop by the Pioneers and rebound by Montes got SHU off in transition where Gibson made a nifty move to slice to the rim, get foul and finish with 29 second left. The made at the free throw line gave the Pioneers just their second lead of the day, 64-62. Off a final time-out, SHU dug in at the defensive end with Gibson rebounding a Jameel Warney miss as the horn blew.
Just over a week ago, the Pioneers erased a 24-point second half deficit to come back and beat Yale in overtime, 85-82. Sacred Heart and Stony Brook will play again this season when the Seawolves visit the Pitt Center on December 18th.
The Pioneers will have Thanksgiving week off before returning action for the home opener on Sunday, November 25th. SHU will host the Lehigh Mountain Hawks at 2 pm in the William H. Pitt Center.