New York, NY | On a night when both teams shot over 55% from the floor it was the College of Staten Island that got the better of home City College of New York, turning back the Beavers, 92-79, in the CUNYAC opener for both teams. CSI improved to 2-5 overall with the win while the Beavers fell to a season-opening 0-5.
Despite the final score, it wasn’t until the middle stages of the second half until the Dolphins began to pull away, catching fire from the field while forcing a host of miscues on the opposite to start the CUNYAC campaign on the right note.
A total of four lead changes donned an eventful first half. The Dolphins got out to a fast start, as sophomore Rigaud Destime connected on three-straight baskets to stake CSI to a 10-4 lead before an 8-0 CCNY response negated the start. Romello Rashad and Mike White connected on three’s for the spark there.
White would add a couple more points to give CCNY an 18-13 edge, but CSI hit back, as a pair of Christian Taylor jumpers, with three’s from Chris Velasquez and Andrew Kartalis as well, put CSI back up, 27-26, with 8:41 to go in the first half. The lead was short-lived, however, as Isaiah Denard pulled in for a lay-up and White drilled another three, putting CCNY ahead for good in the first half, ultimately helping the home side to a 46-42 halftime edge.
It wasn’t until the 17-minute mark of the second stanza that the game started to turn. Rashad gave CCNY a 51-47 lead, and CCNY had possession again but missed a three. Kartalis then changed the momentum meter with a three for CSI, igniting a 13-2 run over the next four-plus minutes. Taylor would add a pair of transition baskets in the run, ended with a driving lay-up from Adeola Latunji.
CSI would grow the lead to double-digits with inside of nine minutes to play, as Nicholas Taylor and Latunji both converted three-point plays. With time perhaps for one more run, CCNY was able to cut the lead to 74-65 on a Denard lay-up, but the Dolphins responded with a 9-2 bender, started by a Krystian Kopec three, and finalized with two more Latunji baskets.
CSI’s biggest lead was 16, 88-72, with under four minutes to play, before the visitors finalized with the 92-79 edge.
CSI was led by Taylor’s 27 points on 12-16 shooting, adding three steals. Latunji was right behind with 26 markers, adding seven rebounds and three assists. Destime finished with 13 points to go with a team-high eight rebounds. Ty-Ler Banks was the leader for CCNY with 18 points, adding four boards. Denard was next up with 16 points and three rebounds, while White garnered 15 points and Rashad had 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds.
CSI finished 39-70 from the field, good for 55.7%, while CCNY connected on 32-of-57, a rate of of 56.1%. The Beavers led the rebounding count, 32-28, but CSI forced 22 CCNY turnovers to their 12, leading CSi to a 29-9 edge in points off turnovers.
The Dolphins will keep their string of CUNYAC games going, as they next will return home on Tuesday, December 4, with a home date against John Jay College. Tip-off is set for 7:30 pm.