Men's Basketball Falls to Colby in NESCAC Opener Friday Night

WATERVILLE, Maine – The Tufts men's basketball team overcame a 19-point first half deficit, but they weren't able to complete the comeback, falling to Colby, 103-93, on the road on Friday night to open up NESCAC play.  

Freshman Tyler Aronson finished with 18 points on Friday night.

The Jumbos are now 5-8 overall and 0-1 in NESCAC play after the setback.  Colby moves to 9-2 overall and 1-0 in conference games with the win. 

Things were even early and with the score locked at seven the Jumbos got a free throw from sophomore Luke Rogers that put them ahead, 8-7, about three minutes into play.  The Mules answered with a layup from Ronan Schwarz and then a three from Matt Hanna and a layup from Wallace Tucker gave them a six-point lead.  After two Jumbo free throws from sophomore Brennan Morris, the Mules got three consecutive threes and then a layup to increase their lead to 15 about eight minutes into the half. 

Down by 17 with about four minutes remaining in the half, the Jumbos woke up.  Sophomore Justin Kouyoumdjian made a layup and then added two free throws.  After a Mule jumper, freshman Carson Cohen made one free throw and on the second Rogers pulled down the offensive rebound and Kouyoumdjian sunk a three to cut the lead to 11.  That was followed by a layup from Cohen, and then a three from freshman Tyler Aronson bring the Jumbos within six with 2:09 left in the half.  

A minute later Cohen cut the lead to four with a layup for the Jumbos.  But the Mules answered with a three from Sam Jefferson to take the lead back to seven.  Aronson drained a three of his own to bring the Jumbos within four, 53-49, at the break. 

The teams traded baskets out of the break and Jefferson made a three and then a layup to put the Mules up by nine a little more than a minute into play.  A jumper from Savage and then a three from sophomore Will Brady cut the lead back down to five about six minutes into the half.  But, the Mules answered with a three from Hanna to take the lead back up to eight.  

With ten minutes left in the game and down by ten the Jumbos made a comeback.  A three from Savage cut the lead to seven and then the captain added two free throws to come within five.  After one Mule free throw, Cohen turned in a layup and then a layup from Rogers with 8:55 left in the game brought the Jumbos within two, 75-73. 

But, the Mules then got a layup from Tucker, a three from Jefferson and another three from Hanna and they were ahead by ten once again, 83-73.  The Mules hung on for the 103-93 win. 

Savage was the offensive leader for the Jumbos, finishing with 21 points and eight rebounds.  Aronson added 18 points, four rebounds and three assists.  Kouyoumdjian turned in 17 points, six rebounds and a couple of assists and steals.  Rogers added 15 points and nine rebounds and Cohen finished with ten points off the bench for the Jumbos.  

Jefferson led the Mules with 32 points, including eight threes.  He also added eight rebounds, six assists, five steals and four blocks.  Hanna finished with 20 points, making five from downtown.  Schwarz added 17 points and Noah Tyson finished with 16 points and seven rebounds along with seven assists.  

The Jumbos are back in action on Saturday with a trip to Bowdoin for a 3 pm start.  Colby will host Bates on Saturday with a 3 pm tip off.