WALTHAM, Mass. – Before closing out January by playing four of five on the road, the nationally-ranked Bentley University men's basketball team will begin the crossover portion of the schedule Saturday by hosting Southern Connecticut State at the Dana Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 3:30 pm and the game can be viewed on the NE10 Digital Network.
The next seven games for the Falcons are against Southwest Division opponents. Coach Jay Lawson's team, which leads the Northeast Division by a game over Franklin Pierce, Stonehill and Saint Anselm, owns a 13-2 record with the win total tied for the most in the region. The Falcons are ranked 17th by the NABC and 18th by D2SIDA, and are a perfect 8-0 in the Dana.
Southern Connecticut will bring records of 7-5 overall and 3-2 NE10 into the Dana Center following a 90-80 loss to Adelphi Wednesday. That snapped a three-game winning streak in which the Owls held Saint Rose, USciences and Pace to a combined .337 field goal percentage.
Bentley extended its winning streak to six with a 67-51 victory at St. Michael's on Wednesday, a game in which the Falcons gave up a season-low points and limited the Purple Knights to 33 percent shooting. Sophomore guard Mason Webb (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness HS) buried six of seven shots from long distance while scoring 24 points and senior forward Chris Hudson (Hodgdon, Maine/Williston Northampton School) followed with 21, along with 12 rebounds.
Hudson, the conference leader in field goal percentage (.578) and blocks (25), is coming off his fifth double-double of the season and second in the last three games. He's scored at least 21 in each of Bentley's three January games and is now averaging 18.4 points and 8.5 rebounds.
Webb continues to have a strong shooting season while putting up nearly 17 points a game. He's shooting 51 percent overall, 44 percent from three and an eye-popping 92 percent at the foul stripe, 11th best in Division II.
Lawson has also been receiving strong play from junior guard Jordan Mello-Klein (Sharon/ Thayer Academy). He had ten rebounds at St. Michael's and is averaging 12.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and 6.7 assists. In conference action, he's scoring at the rate of 18.4 and shooting just a shade under .600.
Junior forward Pete Blust (Hinsdale, Ill./Hinsdale Central HS) has also been playing well with a 10.2 scoring average and.567 field goal percentage.
As a team, Bentley is shooting a conference-best .502 overall, including an even .400 from three, while averaging 83.6 points.
Southern Connecticut has five players who own double-digit scoring averages, including junior guard C.J. Seaforth. He has buried 44 percent of his three-pointers and 22 of 23 free throws while scoring 16.9 a game.
Six-seven senior Taurus Adams I16.0 PPG, 9.5 RPG) has been outstanding on the offensive boards with 48, including ten in Wednesday's Adelphi game.
As a team, Southern scores nearly 76 per game while shooting 44 percent overall and 34 percent from three.
The Falcons have struggled against the Owls in recent years, dropping seven straight, including a 100-88 decision last January in New Haven. Bentley's last win in the series came back during the 2011-12 season.
Next week, Bentley will be on the road twice, at New Haven Tuesday and at Pace Saturday.