COBLESKILL, N.Y. – The Express overcame a five point deficit in the game's final minute as the Wells College men's basketball team posted a 70-69 victory over the Fighting Tigers of SUNY Cobleskill Saturday afternoon at the Iorio Gymnasium. With the victory, the Express move to 10-13 overall on the year and to 6-7 within North Eastern Athletic Conference play. The Fighting Tigers fall to 5-18 overall on the season and to 3-10 against league opponents.
Despite possessing a 67-59 lead with 5:18 remaining in regulation time, the Fighting Tigers allowed the game's next five points, capped off by a Jonathan Hurtado (Brooklyn, N.Y.) slam dunk with 3:59 remaining in the second half to trim the deficit to three. The game's next basket, a Dane Brown layup with 1:13 remaining, re-extended the hosts lead to five points in the waning minutes.
The Express, however, posted a six point run to secure the victory in dramatic fashion. Junior E.J. Taylor (Tampa Bay, Fla.) bombed a three-point basket with 57 seconds remaining in regulation time, cutting the deficit to two points. With only five seconds remaining, junior Al Paul (Elmont, N.Y.) buried a layup and was fouled by Mike Marcelin on the shot. Paul was able to bury his free throw for a three point play to place the Express up by one point late. For the Fighting Tigers, a last effort shot by Brown was missed, granting the Express a road victory.
Both Hurtado and Paul led the way for the Express, scoring 16 points apiece in the victory. Hurtado chipped in a team-best 12 total rebounds and added four assists. Freshman Jordan Bishop (Arlington, Texas) and Taylor tied for second place on the squad, pouring home 14 points apiece. Sophomore J.J. Walton (Ocala, Fla.) was 3-for-6 from the floor, dishing out six assists.
Earlier in the contest, the Express possessed a 9-7 lead with 14:23 left in the first stanza but allowed 12 unanswered points as the Fighting Tigers captured a 10 point lead with 10:33 left in the half. Despite letting the lead get as large as 12, the Express battled back to carry a halftime deficit of four, 39-35, into the locker room. Wells scored 12 of their team's 35 points in the paint, but allowed eight second chance points to the home team while also allowing seven points off of turnovers.
The Express return to action Sunday, Feb. 10 as they face-off against SUNYIT in a 2:00 p.m. road contest. Stay up to date with the latest news directly from the Wells College athletic department by "liking" us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/WellsExpress) and subscribing to our Twitter account (http://www.twitter.com/WellsExpress).
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