YORK, Pa. – Salisbury's Travon Vann scored three of his game-high 22 points in the final 35 seconds to lift Salisbury University to a 61-58 Capital Athletic Conference win over York College on Wednesday night in York.
With the loss, the Spartans fall to 5-9 overall and 1-2 in the CAC, while the Sea Gulls improve to 11-4 and 2-0 in the CAC.
The Spartans jumped out to a quick 9-2 lead just over two minutes into the game. The Green and White played hard on both sides of the court and were able to get Salisbury's leading scorer, Vann on the bench in foul trouble early. With the Sea Gulls top offensive threat out, York was able to push the lead to nine (11-2). The Sea Gulls continued to battle back, but the Spartans seemed to be able to answer.
The first tie of the game came with only 3:49 remaining in the first half. Vann hit a three pointer to make it 21 all. Senior Julian Watson (Odenton, Md./Arundel) answered with a layup to take back the lead, but after some hot shooting by the Sea Gulls, Salisbury would hold a three-point advantage (28-25) heading into halftime.
The second half saw four ties and five lead changes. The Spartans and Sea Gulls traded baskets in the first few minutes. Mike Mathews (Newark, Del./Salesianum) hit a shot that helped York take back the lead, 31-30. However, Vann would drive in for a layup and put the Sea Gulls ahead again. The largest lead of the night for Salisbury would come at 15:31 when the Sea Gulls scored to go up by four (31-35).
York continued to battle on both sides of the court. Todd Maciejewski's (Red Lion, Pa./Red Lion) layup with 11:16 remaining tied the game up 41-41. Watson regained the lead for the Green and White with a pull up jumper, but the Sea Gulls would answer with two made free throws to tie the game back up.
With under six minutes to play, the Spartans made their largest lead of the half. Maciejewski and Mathews finished some strong plays to help put the Spartans up 54-48. Unfortunately, the Sea Gulls had the answer. Vann hit a big three that seemed to drop dead on the back of the rim, but slowly rolled in the basket.
As the shot clock was running down, with only 1:23 left in the game, Tim Harwood's bucket for Salisbury helped bring the Sea Gulls to within one point. Maciejewski was able to come up with a big defensive rebound at the one-minute mark, but after coming out of a timeout, Vann stole the ball off of Maciejewski just past half court and nailed a layup to once again regain the lead.
The Green and White had opportunities to score in the last 17 seconds, but could not get the finish they were looking for and Salisbury would hold onto the win.
As a team, the Spartans shot 44.9% (22-49) from the floor and 27.3% (3-11) from behind the arc. They also sunk 11-of-13 free throws (84.6%). Salisbury only shot 42.6% (20-47) from the floor and were 63.6% (14-22) in free throws, but managed to hit 7-of-23 (30.4%) three point field goals.
Mathews lead the way on offense for the Spartans with 15 points, going 5-7 from the field and 5-6 from the line. Maciejewski recorded his fifth double-double of the season, with 12 points and 10 boards. Also in double-digits for the Spartans were Mitch Kemp (York, Pa./York Suburban) with 11 points and Watson with 10.
The Green and White just outrebounded the Sea Gulls 30-29, but committed more turnovers (18-14).
York returns to action on Saturday afternoon in another CAC matchup at home against Marymount. Game time is slated for 3:00 pm.