(Canton, N.Y.)- Despite a strong second half the SUNY Canton men’s basketball team lost in their home opener to Utica College 89-66 Wednesday night at Roos House.
The Roos (1-3) outscored the Pioneers 38-36 over the final 20 minutes but couldn’t overcome a 53-28 halftime deficit. That margin was mostly due to the hot hand of Matt Baldwin who canned six 3-pointers in the first half for Utica.
For the game the Roos shot a season-high 76 percent from the free throw line, including 8 of 9 in the second half.
Junior Khalid Vaughn (New York, N.Y.) scored 13 of his team-high 19 points in the second half, 12 coming in the final six minutes of regulation despite being saddled with four fouls. Vaughn also had five rebounds, four assists and four steals in 32 minutes. Sophomore Xavier Fisher (Plymouth, Pa.) also reached double figures with 13 points, nine of those in the second half, and he snagged a team-high eight rebounds playing a team-high 34 minutes. Fisher (3-for-3) and Vaughn (3-for-4) combined to go 6-for-7 from the line.
Senior Ryan Lamica (Constable, N.Y.) added eight points, including a pair of 3-pointers and three rebounds. Sophomore Tyler Ellison (New York, N.Y.) and freshman Richard McBride (Bronx, N.Y.) contributed eight points apiece for the Roos.
Baldwin finished with 22 points and eight rebounds and Jeff Ward added a double-double with 16 points and 13 boards.
The Roos play their next two games at home starting on Saturday, Dec. 1 against Paul Smith’s College at 4 p.m. and then on Sunday, Dec. 2 against St. Lawrence University at 2 p.m.