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LaRose Helps Sacred Heart Rebound Win

The Sacred Heart University men's basketball team scored eight of the final 11 points to earn an 81-74 win at Northeast Conference host, Wagner College, Saturday night. The victory improves the Pioneers to 8-7 on the year and 1-1 in league play, while the Seahawks fall to 4-9 on the season an 1-1 in league action.

The Pioneers had five players score in double -figures and including Cameron Parker and E.J. Anosike who recorded double-doubles. Parker finished 13 points and 10 assists, for his fourth double-double of the season, and Anosike had 15 points and 10 boards, for his sixth double-double.

SHU shot a season-best from behind the arc, connecting on 11-22. The Pioneers 52.4 percent from the floor is the second-best single-game effort this year as they bounced back from

a Northeast Conference season opening loss, 65-57, to visiting Merrimack College on Thursday.

Pioneers newcomer Tyler Thomas tallied a career-high 18 points, shooting 7-11 from the field, in the contest. E.J. Anosike collected 16 boards, a game-high. Juvaris Hayes led Merrimack with 17 points, eight steals, seven rebounds and six assists.

The Pioneers return to action on Thursday, January 9, when they travel to Fairleigh Dickinson University. That game is set for 7:00 pm

Turning Point

Tyler Thomas made three free throws at the 9:17 mark and recorded a steal and dunk two possessions later to propel the Pioneers to a 6-0 run that turned a one-point deficit into a 64-59 leadWhen Wagner had clawed back within two points, with 93 seconds to play, Thomas knocked down a three to make it a two-possession game. Koreem Ozier went 5-6 from the free throw line in the final 19 seconds to secure the win

Ozier led all scorers with 18 points, including a career-best 10 free throwsAnosike hit 4-8 from behind the mark for his 15 points, and also led the team with three stealsThomas and Parker both scored 13 points on the evening, while Jare'l Spellman added 10 points.

Ogdensburg's Kinnon LaRose tallied nine points on 4-7 shooting, grabbed four rebound and committed only one turnover Thomas was perfect shooting on the night, 3-3 from the field, two from behind the arc, and 5-5 at the stripe

By The Numbers

The game saw 13 lead changes and 12 tiesTyrone Nesby IV scored 16 points to lead Wagner, as he shot 6-9 from the field, while Nigel Jackson and Alex Morales both tallied 14 pointsSHU held Wagner to 33.3 percent, 10-30, from the field in the second-halfThe Pioneers had a 33-25 edge in rebounds

First-Half

Wagner hit 4-6 from the field, opening an 11-5 lead on a Curtis Cobb jumper at 15:56Ozier drained three free throws at 15:15, out of the media time outSpellman brought the Pioneers within a point, 11-10 with a basket off an inbound play at 14:51An Anosike offensive board kept the Pioneers on offense on the next possession, leading to a three from LaRose in the corner, for a 13-11 SHU leadAfter Wagner tied the game, Anosike scored from behind the arc at 13:25 for a 16-13 advantageZach Pfaffenberger broke a 16-16 tie with a put back off an offensive rebound at 12:22After Wagner tied the score again, with a Martinez basket, LaRose scored four-straight for the Pioneers to make it 22-18Tyler Thomas drained a three at the 10:29 mark to give SHU a 25-18 advantage, the largest lead of the half for either teamThe Pioneers held Wagner to one free throw from the 18-18 tie, a 3:31 stretch, 0-3 from the field, with two turnovers, to build the 25-18Spellman free throws made the score 27-22, before a deep three from Chase Freeman at the 7:56 markWagner battled back to tie the game, 27-27, at 7:14 on an Elijah Ford basketOzier gave SHU the lead back, driving the baseline at 5:26Nesby answered for Wagner on the next possession, the fifth tie of the halfAnosike hit from behind the three-point line, for the second time, at 3:03 to ut the Pioneers in front, 32-29Nesby again tied the game with a three of his own at 2:45Thomas made two free throws for a 34-32 advantage with 1:58 to play in the first-halfChase Freeman hit from outside the paint at 1:35 to knot the score, 34-34An Ozier free throw (1:17) and a LaRose basket in the paint (:51) gave SHU a 37-34 advantage that Freeman erased with a three-pointer with 23 seconds left in the periodAnosike was fouled with 0.6 remaining in the half and hit both free throws, to give SHU a 39-37 lead into the intermission

Second-Half

Wagner again started quickly, opening the half with a 10-4 run, to build a 47-43 lead on Patrick Szpir basket at the 17:08 markOzier (15:40) and Anosike (14:43) drained back-to-back threes to put the Pioneers back on top, 49-47Neither squad could gain separation, with SHU building the largest lead at 54-50 when Parker scored a spinner in the paint at the 12:30 pointWagner embarked on a 6-1 run from that point, taking a 56-55 lead on s three-pointer Nigel JacksonAnosike knocked down a three at the 10:03 mark and Jackson responded at the 9:47 mark, giving Wagner its final lead of the game, 59-58Thomas connected on three free throws on the next possession, and Parker made one to give SHU a 62-69 advantage with 9:00 to playThomas stole a Jackson pass on the other end of the court and went the distance for the dunk to finish a 6-0 SHU runWagner was able to claw back within two when Curtis Cobb drained a pair of free throws with 1:33 to play20 seconds later Ozier found Thomas in front of the SHU bench and he knocked down a triple, to make the lead five points. Alex Morales made two free throws with 17 seconds to play, getting within 77-74Ozier went 4-4 from the stripe in the final 16 seconds to seal the victory

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