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Men’s basketball secures first win after rough start to the season

By Sarah Jousset

Section: Sports

December 1, 2017

The Brandeis men’s basketball team has started off rocky with only one win in the first four games of their season.

The Judges dropped the second game of the season and home opener to Becker on Saturday, Nov. 18, losing by one point in a close game. The Judges began the game against the Becker Hawks neck-and-neck before pulling away with at most a nine point lead and heading into halftime with a solid 42-36 lead over their opponent. The Judges managed to maintain the lead throughout the majority of the second half. It wasn’t until the last four minutes of the game, with Brandeis leading 80-71, that the Hawks went on a 13-0 run sealing their victory over the Judges, who didn’t have time to recover. The Judges dropped the heartbreaker 83-84.

Eric D’Aguanno ’20 led the scoring for Brandeis with an impressive 24 points to accompany his three rebounds, two assists and one steal. Co-captain Nate Meehan ’18 scored 13 points in the game, nine of which were three pointers. Co-captain Latye Workman ’18 earned nine points for the Judges while also contributing seven rebounds and a block in the effort against Becker. Workman tied with Akim Sanni ’21 for most rebounds in the game.

Before heading into Thanksgiving break, the Judges earned their first win of the season on Monday, Nov. 20 against Lasell College in an 82-77 victory at Lasell. The Judges were losing by five points going into halftime. They went into halftime coming off a run that had significantly cut their deficit against Lasell, giving them momentum going into the second half of the game. With 12:30 left in the game, the Judges sparked a 10 point run against Lasell to gain the advantage. Brandeis led their opponent by as much as 10 points in the second half, before Lasell narrowed their deficit to 80-77 with 10 seconds left in the game. However, Corey Sherman ’19 sealed Lasell’s fate with just eight seconds remaining in the game, making two free throws to secure the Judges’ their 82-77 win.

Rookie Lawrence Sabir ’21 had a standout performance for the Judges against Lasell. The guard was the high scorer, scoring 26 points and earning an 81.8 percent shooting percentage. Workman also proved vital to the Judges’ win, tying his scoring career-high with 16 points, and earning a new career high in rebounds with 15 against Lasell. Sabir wasn’t the only rookie to provide a strong performance against Lasell. Semih Say ’21 contributed four steals and a career-high 14 points, while classmate Sanni also set a career-high with 10 points.

The Judges did not play again for over a week, dropping this past Tuesday’s game to UMass Dartmouth, 70-76. The Judges started the game strong, leading all the way through the first half. Brandeis had the 11-point advantage heading into halftime with a score of 40-27. However, it was UMass that came out ready to go in the second half, scoring the first eight points to come within three points of the Judges. Although Brandeis attempted to pad their lead with a 8-5 run, the UMass Corsairs managed a six minute run with a little over nine minutes left in the game. The Judges led by two with just under four minutes left in the game. However, the Corsairs quickly answered with a 3-point jumper to take the lead. UMass Dartmouth only extended their lead with little time left on the clock, and the Judges weren’t able to recover.

Judges put up big numbers in the loss against UMass. Sabir earned 26 points for the second game in a row, earning top scorer, and was the team leader in assists with three. Meehan collected 11 points for the Judges, while Workman earned 10 points, nine rebounds and four steals. Chandler Jones ’21 and D’Aguanno were close behind Workman in rebounds with seven each in the effort against the Corsairs.

The Brandeis men’s basketball team is back in action this weekend in the New England Big Four Challenge hosted by Tufts. The first game of the tournament for the Judges is Saturday at 1 p.m. against defending national champion Babson College.

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