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Men's basketball team's win streak comes to an end vs. Trinity

Rob Stockwell '07 led Bates with 17 points and 14 rebounds.

LEWISTON, Maine -- The No. 12 nationally ranked Bates College men's basketball team suffered its first loss of the season Friday night at the hands of NESCAC rival Trinity College, 68-63, as the Bobcats went cold in the second half while the Bantams warmed up.

The loss finishes the Bobcats' school-record season-starting win streak at 11 games, as well as their 17-game home win streak, stretching over nearly two seasons.

Trinity (12-1, 1-0 NESCAC) rebounded from off shooting in the first half (11-29, 37.9%) to go 15-for-26 in the second half, to come back from a 33-28 deficit at halftime. The Bantams took their first lead of the game at 41-39 with 15:39 to play, lost the lead temporarily, then held off the Bobcats down the stretch.

Patrick Martin (Springfield, Mass.) and Russ Martin (East Longmeadow, Mass.) scored 17 points apiece for the Bantams (12-1), while Robert Taylor (Boston, Mass.) added 15, including 11 in the second half. Michael Hoar (Pembroke, Mass.) collected 10 rebounds.

Senior Rob Stockwell (Temple, N.H.) led the Bobcats (11-1) with 17 points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Senior Zak Ray (Bangor, Maine) added 14 points, nine of which came in the second half, while junior Bryan Wholey (Marshfield, Mass.) and first-year Chris Wilson (Brewer, Maine) chipped in 13 and 12 points, respectively.

The Bobcats hurt themselves at the free throw line, making 14 of 23 foul shots (.609), but they also dipped in field goal percentage from 14-26 (.538) in the first half to 7-for-26 (.269) in the second.

Patrick Martin nailed a three-pointer to open the second half, cutting the Bantams' deficit to 33-31. Wholey scored six straight points for Bates to build the lead back to six at 39-33, but Trinity answered with a 10-0 run, beginning with a layup by Russ Martin, followed by a three-point play by Patrick Martin, followed by a three and a layup by Taylor.

John Lattimer '07 helped spark a rally in the second half in which the Bobcats retook the lead.

Bates fought back with a 10-2 run, beginning with a deep jumper by Ray and a fast-break layup by senior John Lattimer (Atlanta, Ga.) off a nifty assist by Stockwell, who led the Bobcats with four helpers. Ray then hit consecutive threes to put the Bobcats ahead by four, 49-45, with 12:05 to play, prompting a Trinity timeout and creating the loudest roar of the night from the capacity crowd in Alumni Gym.

But Trinity's timeout paid off, as the Bantams went on another run out of the timeout, scoring eight unanswered points while Bates missed four shots in a row and the front end of a one and one, and Trinity led 55-51 with 8:05 to play.

A pair of foul shots by Stockwell got the Bobcats back within two, and two more trips to the line by Wilson and Stockwell got Bates to within two again at 55-53. But the Bobcats went without a field goal from the 12:05 mark until Wilson hit a fast-break layup with 15 seconds left to play. Russ Martin hit all six of his foul shots in the final 19 seconds of the game to ice the victory for Trinity.

Bates never trailed in the first half. The Bobcats rode Stockwell in the early going, and the senior responded with nine points and six rebounds in the first 7 1/2 minutes of the game, finishing the half with 12 points and seven rebounds. Stockwell hit a laypu and a three, both on assists from junior Pat Halloran (Plymouth, N.H.), then banked in a turnaround jumper for an early 16-9 lead. Later Wilson and Ray hit back-to-back threes, and first-year Jimmy O'Keefe (Lexington, Mass.) converted a layup to make it 26-13 Bates with 7:11 left in the half, the largest lead of the game for either team. But a 9-0 Trinity run, composed of a three and a layup by Russ Martin and a pair of jumpers by Taylor, quickly closed the gap to 26-22. Stockwell nailed his second three on a Ray dish to make it 33-26 Bates with 1:26 to play, before a pair of free throws by Patrick Martin closed out the scoring for the half.

The Bobcats (11-1, 0-1 NESCAC) take on No. 2 Amherst tomorrow at 3 p.m. in another NESCAC matchup. The Lord Jeffs (12-0, 1-0) won at Tufts tonight in overtime, 96-92.

STATS: Trinity 68, Bates 63