DOLPHINS HOLD OFF LIGHTNING TO PICK UP FOURTH STRAIGHT CUNYAC WIN, 84-71

The College of Staten Island men’s basketball program picked up their third straight win tonight with a 84-71 win over the Lightning of Lehman College.  CSI upped its mark to 5-4 and 4-0 in the CUNYAC while the Lightning downgraded to 4-4, and 2-2 in the CUNYAC.

Senior guard Frank Schettino shot 52% from the floor tonight, tallying 27 points and 9 assists in the win over the Lightning.  Lehman held the lead for 21 minutes of tonight’s contest while the Dolphins held the lead for just 16.  The Dolphins used a massive defensive stand in the second half holding the Lightning to just 27 points after allowing 44 in the first.  CSI’s also bumped up their scoring from the first half to 46 points after collecting 38 in the first.

Senior forwards Khaleeq Baum was second on the team with 15 points in 27 minutes of action while also grabbing six boards.  Junior forward Kevon Murphy tallied his first double-double of the year, picking up 14 points and 10 rebounds in the win. Freshman guard Robert Rossiter was lethal from behind the arc tonight, shooting 3-for-3 before fouling out of the game with 13 points.

Staten Island trailed by double digits for a majority of the first half, however, they were able to constantly chip away at the lead until they were down just four points when the half ended.  CSI used a 13-6 run in the final minutes of the half to swing the momentum in their favor which led to the second half outburst which eventually led to the Dolphins remaining perfect within the CUNYAC.

15 minutes remained in the contest and Murphy was sent to the line for two free throws where he would convert just one of them to give CSI their first lead of the game, 51-50 since they were up 11-6 just five minutes into the game.  That free throw would give the Dolphins the lead for the rest of the game as they would go on a 7-0 run to take a 57-50 lead over the hosts.  The Lightning refused to give up so easily on their home court and were able to bring the lead down just four but the Dolphins pulled away once again.

Flirting on the edge of their first double digit lead of the game, Schettino would sink a shot from the charity stripe.  Edin Bracic, the Dolphins’ three-point specialist would since a shot from range to keep the Dolphins’ lead in the double digits.  Lehman would try to get back in the game but were never able to get their deficit under eight points as the Dolphins used up the shot clock before taking a shot.

The end of the game was spent mostly at the free throw line as the Lightning resorted to fouling the Dolphins in the hopes they would miss their free throws which would give the Lightning a fast break opportunity.  Staten Island was resilient in the waning moments of the game going 5-for-6 down the stretch to seal the game up and keep the Dolphins perfect within the CUNYAC.

The Dolphins will return to action on Thursday, December 22 where they will take on Division I opponents, Wagner College in the Battle of Staten Island at 7:00 pm.

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