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Bowdoin holds off men's basketball team's comeback, 71-67

Ellis

O'Keefe

Wilson

Schmiemann

BRUNSWICK, Maine -- The Bates men's basketball team rallied in the second half to take the game down to the wire, but Bowdoin prevailed for a 71-67 non-conference victory at Morrell Gymnasium on Thursday evening. The win improves the Polar Bears to 4-1 this season while the Bobcats fall to 3-2 overall.

Bowdoin gained an early cushion thanks to a strong first-half performance by Mark Phillips, who connected on all five of his attempts. A Phillips lay-in sparked a 10-0 spurt for the Polar Bears, who led by as many as 17 points late in the period and settled for a 37-25 lead at intermission thanks to a running jumper at the buzzer by Mike Hauser.

The Polar Bears maintained the lead for the entire second half, with the margin bouncing between 8 and 13 points for the majority of the period until a late surge by the Bobcats.

Trailing 59-46 with six minutes to play, Bates rolled off an 8-0 spurt, capped by a three-pointer by senior Chris Wilson (Brewer, Maine) to close the gap to 59-54 with 3:24 to go. The teams traded buckets until another Wilson three trimmed the lead to 67-65.

Hauser netted two free-throws for Bowdoin to extend the lead to four points before Bates junior Nick Schmiemann (Weymouth, Mass.) was fouled on a three-point attempt and hit the first two shots to cut the Bowdoin lead to 69-67.

His third attempt caromed off the rim but the rebound was snared by junior Brian Ellis (Braintree, Mass.), giving the Bobcats a chance to tie or take the lead with under 13 seconds to play. But Bowdoin's Paul Sellew made a steal and found Will Hanley for a layup to ice the game with three seconds left.

Bates was led by four players in double digits, including Ellis, who notched 14. Senior Jimmy O'Keefe (Lexington, Mass.) totaled 12 points while Wilson had 11 and Schmiemann 10.

Phillips, who scored 14, was Bowdoin's lone player in double figures. Three players finished with nine points, including Randy DeFeo, Hauser and Sellew. Will Hanley scored eight points with 11 boards.

Bates plays in the Paul Bunyan Invitational at Husson University this weekend. The Bobcats take on UMaine-Machias at 6 p.m. on Friday, followed by either Husson or UMaine-Fort Kent on Saturday at 1 or 3 p.m.

STATS: Bowdoin 71, Bates 67