by Matt Heller
On Sunday, the Saint Michael’s College men’s basketball team suffered an 84-48 loss against the University of Vermont in front of 2,838 in a packed Patrick Gym. St. Michael’s, fresh off a 103-64 loss to the University of Connecticut, had their second straight game against an NCAA Division 1 opponent. They started the game strong, taking a 7-5 lead 2 minutes in after senior Jordan Guzman’s 3-pointer. But luck soon ran out; 2 minutes later it was 14-7 Catamounts, and by the half, UVM was up 55-22.
Guzman led the Purple Knights in scoring with 14 points, in addition to 4 rebounds and 2 steals. Freshman Kasai Brown followed with 12 points and 7 rebounds, but also 7 turnovers. Senior Eli DeGrande had 9 points and 8 rebounds off the bench.
Five Catamounts scored double-digits, led by sophomore Ryan Davis with 17. Senior Anthony Lamb, who is one of the 50 players in the nation to be placed on the Naismith Trophy watch list, saw 15 minutes of action and scored 5. The Naismith Trophy is awarded to the best college player in the nation. Lamb is also on the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year award watchlist. The Catamounts are expected to win the AmericanEast conference and have the potential to make a run in the NCAA tournament.
Purple Knights coach Eric Eaton, in his first season, wasn’t too happy with the way his team played. “The level of competition in my guys’ hearts tonight was really disappointing,” he said.
Eaton said he wants to see more toughness and pace out of the team, but thinks they will be playing their best basketball come February. As a new coach, he doesn’t refer back to previous years for reference, but did mention it is hard to lose a guy like Levi Holmes III who could score 20 points per game.
St. Michael’s will open up their regular season against New Jersey’s Caldwell University on Friday at Assumption College.
Photos by Matt Heller
Top left: St. Michael’s #5 Thomas Jackson III attempts a three against UVM #12 Bailey Patella.
Top middle: St. Michael’s #2 Kasai Brown and UVM #4 Robin Duncan fight over possession on the floor.
Top right: St. Michael’s #21 Jason Heter attempts to float a shot over UVM #35 Ryan Davis as #14 Isaiah Powell watches.
Bottom center: St. Michael’s #2 Kasai Brown drives in for the lay-up.
Bottom left: St. Michael’s #5 Thomas Jackson III is defended by UVM #3 Anthony Lamb.
Bottom right: St. Michael’s #30 Jalen Gorham, #23 Jordan Guzman, #33 Walker Storey, and Assistant coach Chris Manning head back to the locker room after a disappointing 84-48 loss.