Releases

For Immediate Release: February 9, 2005
Contact: John Hartrick
Phone: 607-777-6800

Binghamton men's basketball makes it three in a row with 67-53 win over Albany
Bearcats hold Great Danes to just two field goals in first half, cruise to victory

Box score

VESTAL, N.Y. - Binghamton (8-14, 5-8 America East) scored the game's first eight points, limited visiting Albany to just two first-half field goals and cruised to a 67-53 victory over the Great Danes (11-11, 7-6 AE) in an America East men's basketball game Wednesday night in front of 2,919 at the Events Center. The win was Binghamton's third straight and eighth in the last nine meetings with its longtime SUNY rival.

"It was a great team win," head coach Al Walker said. "I thought we did a great job against their press and I was really pleased with how productive we were off the bench. The fans really helped us tonight ... the place was rockin.'"

Albany entered the game as the No. 3 offensive team in the conference (68.1 ppg.) but went the first 5:20 without hitting a field goal and then went the final 11:10 of the half without converting another, allowing the Bearcats to turn a 14-3 run into a 29-12 lead. Despite shooting just 39% in the opening half, BU enjoyed a 34-17 margin as the Great Danes went 2-for-17 (12%).

Binghamton shot 56% from the floor in the second half and its lead never dipped below 13.

Junior forward Schafer Jackson (Provo, Utah) led a balanced BU attack with 15 points - with 10 of those coming in the decisive first half. Jackson hit 5-of-7 from the field, including 3-of-4 from three-point range. Freshman forward Jordan Fithian (McPherson, Kan.) scored a season-high 10 points - eight in the first half. Freshman point guard Mike Gordon (Plainfield, N.J.) contributed eight points and a season-best five steals and junior backcourt mate Andre Heard (Oklahoma City, Okla.) chipped in a season-high seven assists and four steals.

"We're getting better and Jordan (Fithian) and Mike (Gordon) are two pretty good freshman," Walker continued. "They take care of the ball. We have tough guys and they want to get better. I'm really proud of the guys. We hit a rocky period but we told the guys to hang in there and keep working ... that good things are ahead. The bottom line is we're getting better. Sunday (vs. New Hampshire) is a big game. We'll bring it as hard as we can."

Albany was led by junior guard Jamar Wilson, who scored 15 points, thanks primarily to 11-of-13 accuracy from the free throw line.

Binghamton next hits the road to face New Hampshire at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

NOTES
The Bearcats remain unbeaten in February (3-0) and have extended the team's longest win streak of the season ... Binghamton moved into sole possession of sixth place in the 10-team league, just one game out of fifth place and two behind Albany for fourth.

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