Durham, NH – The Sacred Heart Pioneers used a 20-1 second half run to fuel a 66-53 win over the University of New Hampshire Saturday afternoon at Lundholm Gymnasium. With the win, Sacred Heart snaps a six-game losing streak and improves to 3-12 this season.
Junior guard Steve Glowiak (New Britain, CT) led the way for SHU with 17 points off the bench, while freshman De'Von Barnett (Waldorf, MD) added a career-high 15. Senior Louis Montes (Brockton, MA) chipped in with 12 points, and junior Phil Gaetano (Wallingford, CT) added seven assists to go along with a couple of key three-pointers.
New Hampshire had two players in double digits in John Edwards with 13 points, and Bronner Jordan with 12.
After missing the Pioneers' first two shots, Louis Montes kick-started the Pioneers in the opening minutes, finishing off a nice dish from red shirt freshman Cole Walton (Bellevue, WA) to put SHU on the board. Sacred Heart took its first lead of the game at 8-7 when Gaetano knocked down a deep three just before the shot clock expired, followed by a Glowiak three on the right side. Glowiak came up with a steal and a lay-up to the tie the game up at 12. A scooping transition lay-up by junior Chris Evans (Stamford, CT) put SHU ahead 15-12. Evans would also knock down a three-pointer to halt a quick 5-0 UNH run and re-take the lead 18-17 with 6:02 remaining in the first half. Sacred Heart took its biggest lead of the half when Barnett threw down a thunderous one-handed jam in transition to put SHU up 22-17.
Sacred Heart held a halftime lead for the fifth time this season, going into the break leading UNH 26-24.
Barnett got Sacred Heart started in the second half. First by finishing off a lefty lay-up in traffic and then drilling a free throw jumper off a nice dish by Gaetano. Down 30-24, New Hampshire responded with a 12-2 run to take a 36-32 lead with 14:39 remaining in the second. Gabriel Willams and Bronnor Jordan accounted for nine points in the run. Pioneers responded with a 20-1 run of their own to seize control of the game. A couple of dunks by Barnett and back-to-back threes from Glowiak and Gaetano put Sacred Heart ahead 48-37 with 9:19 remaining. Barnett capped the SHU run with a jumper to give SHU a comfortable 52-37 lead with 8:16 left. Glowiak would put the exclamation point on the victory, knocking down a three-ball to give SHU their biggest lead of the game 64-48 with 1:54 remaining.
Sacred Heart will return home Thursday to open up conference play against the Robert Morris Colonials. Sacred Heart is entering its 15th season in the Northeast Conference with a conference record of 105-152.
Notes: UNH's 53 points is the lowest point total given up by Sacred Heart this season. Sacred Heart is now 3-2 when leading at the half.