Tribe unable to close deficit in loss to Northeastern, 69-57

Sophomore Tyler Rice looks to facilitate the basketball. He recorded 9 points, 2 assists, and 4 rebounds against Northeastern on February 18.

Saturday, Feb. 18, William and Mary (10-19, 5-11 CAA) fell to Northeastern (10-17, 6-10 CAA) 69-57 at Matthews Arena in Boston, Massachusetts.

Following a minute of scoreless basketball, Northeastern junior guard Jahmyl Telfort put the first points on the board with a deep three-pointer. The Tribe had no answer for Telfort throughout the game, and he finished with 28 points on 12-23 shooting, going 4-6 from deep. 

The Tribe was finally able to answer with an inside jumper from junior forward Ben Wight. However, Telfort recorded a steal on the ensuing Tribe possession, leading to an easy bucket on the other end and extending the Huskies’ lead to 9-2.

The Tribe took a timeout, hoping to spark their offense. Head coach Dane Fischer sent senior guard Miguel Ayesa, sophomore guard Tyler Rice and freshman guard Chase Lowe into the game. However, another seven-point run by the Huskies put the Tribe in a 16-2 deficit with 14 minutes, 18 seconds left in the half. 

A three pointer from sophomore guard Matteus Case brought the Tribe within 11 points. On the next Tribe offensive possession, Northeastern redshirt senior forward Chris Doherty fouled freshman forward Jack Karasinski. The freshman made both foul shots to pull the Tribe within single digits of the Huskies.

Northeastern quickly crushed any hopes of a comeback, going on a 9-2 run capped off by a jumper from Telfort that ballooned the Tribe deficit to 18 points with nine minutes, 34 seconds left in the half.

With 59 seconds left in the half, Case knocked down a three, leaving the Tribe with a 20-point deficit heading into the second.

William and Mary shot 33.33% from the field in the first half compared to 54.84% from Northeastern. Part of the Tribe’s shooting struggles can be attributed to the absence of key contributor sophomore guard Gabe Dorsey. The sophomore has been battling an injury and missed the Tribe’s last four games, in which the Green and Gold are 1-3. 

To open the second half, the Tribe started the scoring with a three-pointer from Karasinski. Similar to the first half, the Huskies wasted no time responding, this time in the form of a quick jumper in the paint by redshirt junior guard Joe Pridgen. 

Despite a stronger second half performance for the Tribe, Northeastern’s lead grew to as many as 23 points after a layup by Doherty with 12 minutes, 20 seconds left in the second half. 

With 11 minutes, 30 seconds left in the second half, the Huskies went cold, missing their next five shots and two of their three free throw attempts, leaving the door open for a Tribe comeback.

In a team effort with contributions from Rice, Case, Wight, Lowe and graduate student guard Anders Nelson, the Green and Gold scored on five of their next eight shots and gained serious momentum in one final push to win the game.

The Tribe cut the lead to 11 points, making the score 60-49 with six minutes, 39 seconds left in the game. 

Northeastern freshman guard Masai Troutman ensured that the comeback would fall short. After a quick jumper followed by a made free throw, the Huskies pushed the lead to 14 points and slammed the Tribe run to a halt. 

In the final six minutes of the game, the Huskies and Tribe went back and forth, but as time expired, the game ended with a 69-57 Tribe defeat. 

Wight led the Tribe with 15 points, shooting five of nine from the field. Rice contributed off the bench with nine points. Despite missing junior forward Noah Collier from the lineup, the team’s leading rebounder, the Tribe was still able to hold their own on the glass, only being out rebounded 34 to 28, in part due to significant contributions from Lowe, with eight rebounds, and Case, with six more. 

The Tribe will look for revenge in their next game against Elon (8-21, 6-10 CAA) on Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. at Kaplan Arena in Williamsburg, Virginia.


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