BROOKLYN, NY (March 2, 2013) – The Sacred Heart men's basketball team was eliminated from postseason consideration on Saturday, falling at St. Francis Brooklyn 92-80 in the regular season finale. The Pioneers got 29 points from senior Shane Gibson (Killingly, CT) but end the year on a seven-game losing streak to finish 7-11 in the Northeast Conference standings.
St. Francis Brooklyn's Ben Mockford hit six-of-11 from three on his way to 22 points to lead the Terriers into the NEC Tournament with the win. Coming into Saturday's season finale, the winner of the match-up between SHU and SFC would claim the final playoff spot and earn a date with top-seeded Robert Morris in the quarterfinals.
Gibson finishes his Sacred Heart career with 2,079 points, placing him fifth all-time in the Northeast Conference annals and moves him to eighth all-time on the SHU scoring list. He finished the season averaging 21.6 points per game and averaged 24.8 points in NEC games.
The Pioneers (9-20, 7-11 NEC) grabbed the lead off the tip as Gibson drilled a three on the game's first possession. SFC's Travis Nichols answered with a three at the other end to start the Terriers off on what would be a 12-for-27 night from behind the arc. Five different Terriers buried three's on the day led by Mockford's six triples.
SHU took an 18-16 lead just over five minutes in on a three-point play by sophomore Steve Glowiak (New Britain, CT). The Terriers grabbed control of the game over the next 10 minutes, piecing together a 21-5 run to build a 14-point lead. Akeem Johnson hit a pair of jumpers and Jalon Cannon converted on a put-back and one. Mockford's three at 5:44 gave St. Francis Brooklyn at 37-23 a lead.
A Gibson three-point play cut the lead down to six, 38-32, but SFC pushed the lead back to double digits and led 45-36 at the break. The Terriers used a 20-9 run in the first six minutes of the second half to take their biggest lead of the game at 65-47. SHU twice cut it back to single digits, both thanks to Lewis Cramer (Seattle, WA) lay-ups. Cramer pulled SHU within 72-64 with eight minutes to play but the Terriers responded with a 7-0 spurt and their lead would never dip below double digits the rest of the way.
The Terriers shot 53.1 percent (34-64) from the field and out rebounded the Pioneers 37-31. Johnson and Cannon each finished with 15 points for the Terriers. Every St. Francis Brooklyn player that appeared on Saturday found the scoring column.
Junior Louis Montes (Brockton, MA) scored 20 points for SHU hitting eight-of-13. Freshman Tevon Falzon (Newton, MA) added a career-high 12 points off the bench for SHU. The Pioneers shot an even 50.0 percent (32-64) for the game.
Sophomore Phil Gaetano (Wallingford, CT) dished out nine assists in the loss, finishing the season with 222 assists, a new SHU Division I records. His 222 assists this season is the seventh highest single season total in NEC history.
The Pioneers end the season losing seven-straight to tie their longest losing streak of the season. SHU was 9-20 overall in 2012-13.