NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. — The Keene State men’s basketball team was dealt a lopsided 108-68 defeat by the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth in the Little East Conference tournament championship game Thursday night at the Tripp Athletic Center.
Not only did UMass-Dartmouth (8-2) amass a season-best 58 percent shooting performance and make 15-of-32 (47 percent) from long range, the Owls (6-3) shot a season-worst 33 percent from the floor and connected on just 5-of-27 (19 percent) shots from three-point range.
Keene State never led for the second straight game against UMD.
The Corsairs, who won their 12th Little East title and first since 2009, raced out to an 8-2 lead barely over two minutes in after Adam Seablom scored five straight points and then were up 13-4 after freshman Isaac Percy did the same thing not even a minute later.
Percy finished with 11 points on 5-of-10 shooting and five rebounds.
Trailing 15-6, Keene State got back within three on DeVon Beasley’s triple at the 14:54 mark and were still down that many after two free throws by Nate Siow with 12:22 left in the opening half, but after that, UMass-Dartmouth outscored the Owls 19-3 over the next 6:46 to lead 38-19 and KSC never got back in the game, eventually trailing 52-27 at halftime.
Every player that UMass-Dartmouth put in the game scored, with four reaching double-figures.
Jarron Santos made 7-of-9 shots, 5-of-6 from three point range, while putting in 19 of the Corsairs’ 60 bench points. Seablom added 14 points and Marcus Azor finished with 13 points and seven assists.
The Corsairs finished with 23 assists in the game and finished with a season-low six turnovers.
Beasley had 13 points and three assists to lead Keene State. Justin Williams made all three of his shots, including a three, and all three free throws to score 10 points. Jeff Hunter also had 10.
The loss wraps up the Owl careers of Beasley, Williams, and James Anozie.
Anozie figures to finish his four years at KSC with 1,157 career points, good for 25th on the college’s all-time men’s basketball scoring list. His 59 percent shooting would be tops on the Keene State career list, edging out Dave Terry ’71, who shot 58 percent overall.
KSC started the year 4-0 but lost three of five to close the season, two to UMD.