GORHAM, Maine -- Junior Mark Brust scored 20 points, one shy of his career high, but it wasn't enough for the Bates men's basketball team to avoid a 62-59 non-conference loss at the University of Southern Maine on Tuesday night.
Brust shot 9 of 16 from the floor and scored 18 of his points on two-point baskets in a tightly contested game with seven lead changes and four ties. The remainder of the Bobcats' starting five largely struggled to find their mark, shooting a combined 5 for 25. Senior Reid Christian (Pownal, Maine) scored 12 points, hitting 4 of 6 shots from behind the arc, and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds from off the bench.
Brandon Tomah scored 16 points and Chris Pagentine and Jeremy Jackson added 13 apiece for the Huskies (4-0). Jackson and Tomah grabbed nine boards apiece.
Bates (1-2) returns to action in a week, Nov. 29, for an 8pm home game against Thomas College, which follows the Bates women's 6pm matchup against Husson.
With the score knotted up at 53-53 with just over three minutes remaining in regulation the Huskies outscored the Bobcats 9-4 down the stretch. Pagentine hit a three-point basket with 2:43 to play to put USM up 56-53, but the Huskies' lead was short-lived as Christian drained a three of his own for the 10th tie score of the game with 2:27 to play.
After missed possessions on either side of the ball, USM's Conor Sullivan gave the Huskies the lead 58-56 with a running jumper in the paint. Bates sophomore guard Luke Matarazzo (Shelton, Conn.) pulled his team to within one with one of two free throws with 30 seconds remaining, but it was as close as the Bobcats would get. Forced to foul, Bates put Huskies junior guard Alex Kee on the free throw line twice and he made all four of his shots as the Huskies outscored Bates 4-2 in the final seconds of play.
Stats and Play by Play