For Immediate Release: November 25, 2006
Contact: John Hartrick (
Phone: 607-777-6800

Binghamton basketball battles past Cornell 57-56 for third straight win
Bearcats hold off final Cornell flurry in closing seconds

Box Score
Postgame quotes

VESTAL, N.Y.-- Freshman forward Lazar Trifunovic (Belgrade, Serbia) sank two free throws with 27 seconds left and Binghamton (3-1) withstood two inside shots in the frantic waning seconds to preserve a 57-56 victory over visiting Cornell (3-2) in a men's college basketball game Saturday afternoon at the Events Center. The win stretches BU's win streak to three.

Trifunovic, who scored of 10 of his 12 points in the pivotal second half, grabbed a big offensive rebound off a BU miss with 27 seconds left, and drew the foul with BU down 56-55. He calmly sank both free throws to create the final margin.

"I thought our guys played our hearts out today," head coach Al Walker said. "It was a great win for us ... Cornell is playing very well. It was a hard-fought game and for the third straight game, we shot the ball well."

The second half was a see-saw affair, with neither team leading by more than three points.

Senior guard Troy Hailey (Hyattsville, Md.), BU's leading scorer with 15 points, scored six points in the final 2:27 - on a three-pointer with 2:27 left and a three-point play with 1:33 to play. Hailey hit 5-of-6 from the field and in the process, extended his consecutive three-point streak. He hit all four of his three-attempts and has connected on seven straight shots from beyond the arc.

Binghamton led 33-30 at intermission but missed nine of the team's first 10 shots to begin the sluggish second half. The teams combined for just two field goals in the first 7:48 of the period. From that point on, however, the Bearcats shot 7-of-12 to finish the game.

Trifunovic hit 3-of-4 from the floor, including several difficult turnaround jumpers.

"Lazar played a great game," Walker said. "He carried us down the stretch."

Junior guard Richard Forbes (Far Rockaway, N.Y.) scored 13 points, with 10 of those coming in the first half.

Cornell forward Ryan Wittman led all scorers with 19 points.

The Bearcats head to Hamilton, N.Y. to face Colgate at 7 p.m. on Monday.

Troy Hailey was selected as the America East Player of the Game ... this is Binghamton's best start of the season since the 2002-03 season (3-0) ... this was the first meeting between the two Central New York schools in 16 years.

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