Amherst, Mass. - December 4, 2010 - The Springfield College men's basketball team won its fourth-straight game on Saturday afternoon as it powered past Westfield State, 78-60, in the 2010 Pioneer Valley Classic hosted by Amherst College. History was made in the contest as junior Ryan Coburn set the program record for most career blocks.
Coburn, who swatted three shots away in today's win, has now registered 156 blocks with the Pride. A year ago, Coburn set the single-season marks for blocks after posting 87 rejections. The previous mark was held by John Sylvia, who totaled 154 in his career.
Last evening, the Owls of Westfield State dropped a 110-57 result to the host Lord Jeffs, while Springfield pulled out an 82-67 win over Elms College in the nightcap. With this weekend’s results, Westfield falls to 2-4 on the year, while Springfield pushes above .500 for the season at 4-3 overall.
With 13:09 to play in the first half, Springfield senior Darvis Rankins knocked down a pull-up jumper to give the Pride a 12-8 lead. Through nearly eight minutes Rankins and Coburn were the only Springfield players to score, putting in all 12 of the team’s points until Trevor DiMicco made a free throw with 12:03 remaining.
Springfield’s lead remained at just four points until the 7:26 mark when Evan Christner finished off a three-point play on a Billy Harkins alley-oop. The Christner and-one put the Pride on top 22-15, but Westfield State’s Andrew Morgan responded with a three-point play of his own on the next Owl possession.
At the half, Springfield held a 41-30 lead riding 11 points from Coburn and eight points from Rankins. Ryan White led the Owls with seven points in the first half. In less than seven minutes of second half action, the Pride stretched its lead to 50-35 on a score by Coburn.
In the final 13 minutes of the game, Westfield State never got closer than 15 points as Springfield cruised to the 78-60 win.
For the day, Springfield’s Matt Cavalieri led all players with 16 points and 11 rebounds for his second straight double-double, while Coburn totaled 15 points. Rankins finished with 11 points, Harkins added six points, four assists, four rebounds, and a pair of steals, while Christner finished with 11 points. Eric Vargas scored a team-high 12 points for Wetsfield, while Eugene Turner and Marcellus Lee each scored 10 points.
Springfield got to the often and made the Owls pay as the Pride connected on 29-of-33 shots from the charity stripe.
For their play this weekend, Springfield’s Cavalieri and Rankins and Westfield State’s Eugene Turner were named to the All-Tournament Team.