December 7, 2011

Seahawks Edge Spartan in Classic CAC Contest

YORK, PA – St. Mary's Chris Hutchinson hit a go-ahead lay up with 36 seconds left in regulation to lift the Seahawks to a 71-69 Capital Athletic Conference win over the host York College Spartans on Wednesday night at Charles Wolf Gymnasium in York. The loss snaps York's modest two game win streak as the Spartans are now 5-3 overall and 2-1 in the league. St. Mary's improves to 6-2 overall and 2-0 in the conference.

The last minute and a half of the game proved to be the most exciting moments of a very exciting game. Kyle Wise gave the Seahawks a three-point lead on a three-point play with 1:32 left in regulation. The Spartans responded with a huge Jeremy Skoloda three from the right baseline with 1:09 remaining, tying the game at 67. After a timeout, the Seahawks ran the clock down and with two second left on the shot clock, Hutchinson drove baseline and kissed a shot off glass as the Seahawks took a lead they would not relinquish.

On York's ensuing possession, Julian Watson missed a leaner in the lane and York was forced to foul with 11.9 left. Devin Spencer converted both free throw attempts, putting St. Mary's up four. Watson hit a lay up with 6.6 seconds left and York fouled Spencer again. This time, the Seahawk missed the front end of the one-and-one. Mitch Kemp collected the rebound with 4.8 seconds left and drove the ball up the floor but his three-pointer from about 30 feet drew glass but no iron as the Spartans suffered the heartbreaking loss.

The game started off with St. Mary's asserting control early as they held the Spartans scoreless for the first three minutes of the game. The Seahawks eventually pushed their first half lead to eight on a Deon Queen three at the 11:25 mark. York trimmed the lead to three on a Todd Maciejewski lay up with 9:43 left in the first half. The Seahawks proceeded to score 11 of the next 16 points to push the lead to 28-19 as they looked like they were on the brink of putting the Spartans away early.

York would not go away as the Spartans fashioned an 11-2 run, tying the game at 30. It looked like it would go to the break tied but with 0.2 seconds left in the half, Hutchinson attempted a three from about 35 feet as the half was set to expire. There was a Spartan foul called on the play and Hutchinson converted all three free throws to give the Seahawks a 33-30 lead. That call would prove to be huge with the final two-point margin of victory for the visitors.

The second half saw the Seahawks start to pull away from the Spartans. St. Mary's extended their lead to a game-high 11 points on a DeVohn Gilmore three with 11:51 remaining in the game. York started their climb back into the game with a Paul Kouvaris lay up followed by a Skoloda triple. That started a 19-6 run that culminated in a Mo Oursler three, which gave the Spartans a 60-58 lead with 5:07 left in the game. That would start a stretch where there were three ties and four lead changes before St. Mary's won the game late.

St. Mary's was very balanced in the win as four players reached double figures led by Hutchinson and Jeff Haus with 14 points each. Hutchinson was 4-for-9 from the floor, 1-for-4 from three and 5-for-5 at the line. He also had six rebounds and two assists. Haus was a very efficient 6-for-9 from the floor while he was also 2-for-2 from the free throw line. Haus contributed five rebounds to the Seahawk attack. Reigning CAC Rookie-of-the-Year Christian MacAuley contributed 12 points, eight rebounds and two blocked shots to St. Mary's effort while Brendan McFall tallied 10 points for the visitors.

Kouvaris paced the Spartans with 18 points and five rebounds in 28 minutes of work. Kouvaris scored 12 points in the second half for York. Skoloda tallied a season-high 14 points on 5-of-7 shooting from the floor including a pair of threes. Senior Andrew Pawlyk was the third Spartan in double figures with 11 points in 23 minutes of action. Maciejewski led York with six rebounds while he also had five points, two steals and a blocked shot.

Both teams shot the ball well from the floor despite some good defense. St. Mary's shot 50% from the field and 23.5% (4-for-17) from three. York shot 51% from the field and 54.5% (6-for-11) from three.

The difference in the game came at the charity stripe. St. Mary's went 11-for-13 (84.6%) while the Spartans went a crippling 13-for-24 (52.4%) from the stripe.

The Seahawks forced 17 Spartan turnovers, which they turned into 26 points. St. Mary's had 15 miscues but York could only turn that into seven points.

The Spartans continue their conference slate with a trip to Frostburg State to face the Bobcats in a conference contest on Saturday. Tip time in Frostburg is set for 3:00 pm.

Todd Maciejewski photo courtesy of Zach Clabaugh (www.sharpedgefoto.com)