The College of Staten Island overcame a modest halftime deficit to post their first win of the season on the road over Montclair State University, by a 70-60 count. The Dolphins, who lost their first two games of the season in overtime improved to 1-2 overall while the Red Hawks evened to 2-2.
In a very low scoring first half, the teams combined to shoot just 16-51 (31%) as the Red Hawks nursed a modest 21-20 edge at intermission. Two buckets and a three by senior T.J. Tibbs got the Dolphins started on an 11-4 run that spanned the first 9:20, but CSI went cold after that, as MSU used a 13-4 run over the next eight minutes to take a 17-15 lead with 2:47 to play in the first stanza.
MSU led by as many as three points but a Dylan Bulger lay-up right before intermission cut the lead to one and Dale Taranto’s jumper gave CSI back the lead quickly into the second half. The lead changed hands four times after that until a Ken Rubenstein three-ball tied the game at 35-35 at 5:58 into the second frame. That’s when the Dolphins went on their crucial run. Two field goals each by Bulger, Tibbs and Bloochy Magloire helped CSI to a 12-2 run. After a dreadful shooting performance in the first half, it was a complete reversal in the second as CSI shot a red-hot 18-of-20 for 90% from the floor.
As quickly as the Dolphins went up, however, MSU cut back into the lead, going on a 13-3 run over the next six minutes to make it a 50-50 game with 5:58 to play. CSI never did drop the lead, however, as a pair of Jordan Young free-throws got the lead back, and then Taranto drained a jumper and then a clutch three-point bomb to put the Dolphins back up by seven, 57-50, with 4:09 to go. Another Rubenstein three cut CSI’s lead down to five with 2:27 to play, but the Dolphins ended on a 9-4 run to end the game, a run that included a 7-of-8 performance from the free-throw line in the closing 1:20.
Maloire led all CSI scorers with 23 points, while Young added 17 and Tibbs 13. Bulger led the squad with eight rebounds to go with eight points. Rubenstein led all from MSU with 24 markers, while Ordel Goldson pulled down 16 rebounds.
The Dolphins will get back to action on Tuesday evening when they host Drew University in their home opener at 7:30pm.