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UMF charges back to tip men's basketball team

FARMINGTON, Maine -- UMaine-Farmington charged back from a 39-24 halftime deficit to defeat the Bates men's basketball team 80-73 in a non-conference matchup on Tuesday night.

Junior Ed Bogdanovich (Portland, Maine) led Bates (11-10), ranked third in this week's Maine Men's Basketball Coaches and Writers Association Top 5 poll, with 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting, to go with five rebounds and two blocked shots. Senior John Squires (Swampscott, Mass.) had his eighth double-double in the past nine games with 10 points and 10 rebounds, in addition to four steals, before fouling out. Sophomore Luke Matarazzo (Shelton, Conn.) had 10 points and seven assists, and junior Mark Brust (Duxbury, Mass.) added 11 points and nine rebounds.

Ben Johnson led the Beavers (13-8), ranked fifth in this week's state poll, with 20 points and nine rebounds, shooting 8-of-12 from the field, while Kevin Leary shot 5-for-6 overall and 4-for-5 from behind the arc for 17 points. Joe McCloskey and Yusuf Iman added 13 and 11 points, respectively.

The Beavers made 20-of-28 attempts from the free-throw line, compared to 7-of-10 for the Bobcats. UMF shot 63.0 percent (17-27) in the second half, including 70 percent (7-10) from 3-point range.

After a Leary three opened the scoring, Squires scored six points to guide the Bobcats on a 15-0 run with a pair of free throws by sophomore Sean Cunningham (Amherst, Mass.) making it 15-3 with 12:35 until intermission. UMF knocked the lead down to 27-20, but senior Reid Christian (Pownal, Maine) and Matarazzo helped the Bobcats close the final 5:03 of the half with a 12-4 stretch to take a 39-24 lead.

Bogdanovich hit a basket with 18:27 left in the game to give the Bobcats an 18-point edge, but the hosts, who misfired on nine of 10 threes in the opening half, got hot with a pair of Leary 3-pointers sparking a 15-0 run for UMF. McCloskey made a jumper with 13:40 to play to cut the Bates lead down to 45-42.

Pet Sumner made a three with 10:27 remaining to give UMF its first lead since 3-0 with 10:27 to go. After a Bogdanovich bucket, Johnson tallied six points to spearhead a 14-4 stretch for the Beavers as they regained and expanded their lead to 67-58 on a pair of Sumner free throws with 4:02 left to play.

Leary buried a 3-pointer with 2:14 to go to give the Beavers their largest advantage at 72-61. Securing the win wasn't easy for UMF as the Bobcats were able to trim the Beavers' lead down to five points on two occasions down the stretch, but UMF did enough from the foul line (8-14) to complete the comeback with an 80-73 win.

Bates plays another non-conference road game on Thursday night, taking on Rhode Island College in Providence at 7pm (Live Stats / Video).

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