Nov 15, 2013
WILLIMANTIC, Conn.-The Becker College fell to Purchase College went 58-45 in men's basketball at the Eastern Connecticut State University Tip-Off Tournament Friday night at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.
Purchase (1-0), which has won four of five games in three years in the tournament, moves into the championship for the second time Saturday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. against host Eastern, which downed Worcester State University, 90-79, in Friday's first semifinal. Becker (0-1) meets Worcester State in Saturday's 1 p.m. consolation game. The Panthers won the title in their last tournament appearance in 2010, defeating Eastern by a score of 80-79.
Despite having returned only four letterwinners from last year's NCAA tournament qualifier, Purchase never trailed Friday. The Panthers scored eight consecutive points to assume an early 12-4 lead, and after the Hawks whittled the lead to two, Purchase held Becker scoreless from the floor over the final seven minutes, using a 9-1 run to post a ten-point, 27-27 halftime lead.
Senior guard Andre Nixon (Harlem, NY), the team's top returning scorer, tossed in 15 of his team's first-half points and finished with a game-high 31. He was 11-for-16 from the floor, including 6-for-9 from three-point range, over 40 minutes.
Sophomore forward Scott Dulaire (Bloomfield) was Becker's only double-figure scorer, finishing with ten, while junior swingman Justin Person (Greenburgh, NY) followed Nixon with 12 points for Purchase.