Thursday, December 9, 2004
By Bob Heller
It was CACC basketball at it finest in Bloomfield, New Jersey tonight as the USP men’s basketball team battled back from a double digit deficit to tie the score late in the game only to watch a victory slip from their grasp as the defending CACC tournament champions prevailed 79-75.
USP trailed 49-39 at the 15:11 mark of the second half before going on a 12-5 run to pull within three 54-51 at the 10:35 mark. Both teams exchanged points over the next 3:44 with the Devils still trailing 62-59 with 6:51 left. A 13-7 by the Deacons increased their lead to eight, 75-67 with just 3:12 left. The Devils then went on an 8-0 run to tie the game with 1:53 left.
Eric Cangelosi (So., Camden Catholic HS/ Haddon Heights, NJ) started the run with a layup at the 2:50 mark. Cangelosi was fouled on the play and converted the free throw to complete the three-point play and make the score 75-70. Chris Dougherty's (Sr., Haverford HS/ Haverford, PA) jumper with 2:33 left pulled USP within three 75-72. Cangelosi followed with a three-point field goal to tie the game at 75-75 at the 1:53 mark.
The Devils had a chance to take the lead following a missed jumper by Bloomfield but eventually turned the ball over with 50 seconds left. Daniel Terrell hit a three-pointer with 37 seconds left to give Bloomfield a three-point lead 76-75. A missed jumper by the Devils gave the ball back to the Deacons. Forced to foul, the Devils put Bloomfield’s Javier Salson on the line. He made the first of two free throws with nine seconds left to provide the Deacon’s with the final margin of victory.
Cangelosi led all scorers with 24 points. Gene Willard (Sr., Cardinal O'Hara HS/ Broomall, PA) added 20 points while Chris Brattelli (Sr., Highland Regional HS/Clementon, NJ) and Dougherty chipped in 12 and 10 points respectively. USP shot 50% from the field (26-52) and was a perfect 19-for-19 from the charity stripe.
USP is now 4-4 overall and 3-1 in conference play. Next up for the Devils is a home conference match against NJIT on Saturday, December 11, 2004. This will be the Devils last game before the Christmas break.