The Bates men's basketball team needed -- or badly wanted, at least -- a win last Tuesday, when Thomas College visited Alumni Gym. The Bobcats entered the game on a two-game skid and in danger of falling to 1-3 to the Terriers, who were ranked just one place back, at No. 5, in the season's first state Top 5 poll by the Maine Men's Basketball Coaches and Writers Association.
Along with a big assist from Bates first-year guard Billy Selmon (Atlanta, Ga.), senior captain John Squires (Swampscott, Mass.) answered the call for help as the Bobcats trailed by as many as 12 points in the second half of the game. Selmon scored 11 of his team-high 15 points in a four-minute span that put Bates right back in the thick of things. And down the stretch, the Bobcats turned to Squires: Bates nursed a 63-61 lead with 3:31 left in regulation when Squires scored underneath for a four-point cushion. He added four more points and two rebounds the rest of the way as Bates pulled away for an important 72-63 win.
The recently named First Team All-NESCAC wide receiver scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the second half of the game to finish with 14 points, a career-high 12 boards, two blocked shots and two steals. Bates outrebounded Thomas 55-43 in the game, after the teams were tied 27-27 on the glass after one period.