SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Behind a career-high 31 points from junior guard Sean Hoehn, the Sacred Heart University men's basketball team scored a season-high 94 points in a 94-84 win over the Bryant Bulldogs at Chace Athletic Center.
SHU – 10-20, 5-12 NEC
Bryant – 3-27, 2-15 NEC
The Turning Point
After trailing most of the first half, Bryant went on a 12-5 run late in the first half to take a 46-45 lead with 2:23 to play. SHU closed the half on a 9-2 run, as Sean Hoehn's buzzer-beating jumper gave the Pioneers' a 54-48 halftime lead. The Pioneers opened the second half with a 14-4 run to go up by 16, 68-52. Bryant got as close as five in the second half, but six straight points from Hoehn capped a 9-2 SHU run to put the lead back at 12, 79-67, with 7:57 to play.
- The Pioneers made seven of their first nine shots from the field Thursday night. Joseph Lopez's layup at the 13:37 mark capped a 7-0 SHU run to put the Pioneers in front 21-8 and force a Bulldogs timeout.
- Bryant chipped away at the SHU lead, and eventually used a 12-5 run over 3:18 to take its first and only lead of the half. A Bosko Kostur jumper with 2:23 to play put the Bulldogs ahead 46-45.
- SHU closed the half on a 9-2 run to take a 54-48 halftime lead. E.J. Anosike and Hoehn scored all nine points.
- The Pioneers shot 63.6% from the field in the half, while Bryant shot 51.5%. Hoehn led all players with 14 first half points.
- Just like the first half, SHU opened the second with a 14-4 run to go up by 16, 68-52, with 14:30 to go. Matasovic had five points in that stretch, including a three-pointer. SHU held Bryant to 1-for-7 from the field in the first 5:30.
- Bryant responded with a 13-2 run over the next 4:23 to get within five, 70-65. The Bulldogs made seven of eight free throws during that stretch and forced five SHU turnovers.
- Six straight points from Hoehn capped a 9-2 Pioneers run to get the lead back up to 12, 79-67, with 7:57 to play.
- Hoehn scored SHU's final eight points to reach his new career-high of 31.
Key Stats and Notes
- SHU's win, coupled with Central Connecticut's last-second loss to Wagner, kept the Pioneers alive for the NEC tournament.
- Hoehn finished the game 10-for-16 from the field, with four three-pointers, and a perfect 7-for-7 at the foul line. He also became the first Pioneer to play all 40 minutes in a game this season.
- Four other Pioneers scored in double-figures Thursday night. LaRose made five threes on his way to 19 points. Lopez added 14 points and nine rebounds. Matasovic had 10 points and nine rebounds. Anosike had 11 points off the bench, his first double-figure scoring game since Jan. 13 at St. Francis Brooklyn.
- SHU shot a season-high 61% from the field and 91.7% from the free throw line Thursday, while also making a season-high 11 three-pointers.
- Ikenna Ndugba led Bryant with 20 points.
SHU closes the 2017-18 regular season on Saturday, Feb. 24 at LIU Brooklyn. Tipoff is at 2 p.m. A win and a Central Connecticut loss Saturday will put the Pioneers in the NEC Tournament for a fourth consecutive year.