BALTIMORE - After hitting 60 percent from the field against Maine last week, the UMBC men's basketball team ran into a shooting drought that lasted nearly 10 and a half minutes tonight against Stony Brook. The Seawolves took advantage of the Retrievers' struggles by running up a 37-17 halftime lead and held on to remain undefeated in the 2016 calendar year with a 75-52 victory at the RAC Arena.
The Retrievers (6-20, 2-9 America East) opened the scoring with two successful free throws from sophomore Jairus Lyles (Silver Spring, Md./DeMatha), but Stony Brook's Carson Puriefoy countered with a three to take the lead.
Freshman Joe Sherburne's (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) jumper less than a minute later put the Retrievers back on top by one, but the Seawolves took a lead they would not surrender for the rest of the night.
Stony Brook (21-4, 12-0 AE), which extended the nation's longest winning streak to 17, was dominant in the paint, scoring 20 of their 37 first half points from that area and pulling down a total of 26 rebounds in the half.
Freshman forward Nolan Gerrity (Cleveland, Ohio) made life under the basket a little harder for the Seawolves in the second with a team leading four defensive rebounds. Gerrity finished the game with a season high six total rebounds and was two points shy of his season high with eight points.
Stony Brook hit 50 percent of their field goals (13-of-26) in the opening frame, while UMBC shot a tepid 14 percent (4-of-27). Not a single Retriever scored twice from the field in the first, but UMBC shot 64 percent (9-of-14) from behind the line.
Neither team had much luck from beyond the arc in the opening half. Collectively, the two squads went 1-11 from three-point range.
The home team fought all through the night, with five of their eight steals coming in the second half, and was eager to make a run, but could not keep up with the Seawolves' offense.
The Retrievers were able to up their shooting efficiency in the second half (43.3 percent) but finished with their second worst shooting percentage of the season by hitting only 16-of-52 attempts (30.8 percent).
Despite the tough outing for the Retrievers as a whole, sophomore guard Malcolm Brent (Silver Spring, Md.) was perfect from the floor, finishing on all three of his field goals and hitting UMBC's lone three.
Lyles again led the team in points (13) and was the only Retriever to break double digits, despite putting up his second lowest total of the season.
Stony Brook senior and reigning America East player of the year Jameel Warney led all players with 22 points, and was one of four Seawolves to post double-digit point totals.
The Retrievers travel to UMass Lowell this Sunday, Feb. 14 for an America East Conference matinee. Tip-off time is scheduled for noon.