No. 24 Bentley Uses Superior Shooting and Balanced Scoring to Best Franklin Pierce 93-79

Colton Lawrence
Colton Lawrence

RINDGE, N.H. – Fifty-seven percent shooting, including an impressive 13 of 20 from three-point land, helped Bentley University stay unbeaten with a 93-79 win over Franklin Pierce University in Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball Wednesday night.

All five starters scored in doubles, with senior guard Ryan Richmond (Toronto, Ont./Thomson Collegiate) at the top of the list with 20, as the Falcons, ranked 24th in the NABC Division II coaches poll, improved to 6-0 overall and 3-0 Northeast-10.

Richmond was followed on the scoring list by sophomore guard Colton Lawrence (Myerstown, Pa./ECHO HS) with 19 and junior forward Chris Hudson (Hodgdon, Maine/Northampton Williston School) with 16.

After falling behind early, Bentley surged in front with a 21-5 run that made it a 10-poimt lead, 26-16, with 11:39 left in the opening half. The Falcons were red-hot from the floor during the opening eight-plus minutes, dropping ten of their first 13 shots through the basket.

Lawrence and Hudson combined for 14 of the 26 with eight and six points respectively.

Later in the first half, Hudson hit two shots during an 8-0 run that made it a 12-point game, 38-26 with 6:20 left until the break.

Bentley's first three made shots in the second half were three-balls and the lead grew to 18, 60-42, with 15:42 remaining. Senior forward Zach Gilpin (Hampden, Maine/Hampden Academy) drained the first and Richmond hit the other two, about 45 seconds apart.

Another triple, this one from junior guard Seth Stankiewicz (Reading, Pa./Hill School), put Bentley up 20, 79-59, with 8:52 to play.

The Ravens (3-3, 1-1 NE10) closed to within ten with 4:24 left before two free throws by Richmond and a long jumper from sophomore guard Jordan Mello-Klein (Sharon, Mass./Thayer Academy) ended their momentum, restoring the lead to 14 with 3:38 left.

Richmond, who has scored at least 20 in every game thus far, made three of five triples and also had four assists and three rebounds. He surpassed Brian Tracey '10 on Bentley's all-time scoring list, moving to 11th with 1,552.

Lawrence and Hudson both finished with double-doubles. Lawrence grabbed 12 rebounds and sank three of five from distance. Hudson, 7 of 11 overall, corralled ten boards

Jay Lawson, who was coaching his 800th Bentley game, also received 14 points, seven rebounds and eight assists from Mello-Klein and 13 from Gilpin. Off the bench, Stankiewicz had eight without missing a shot.

Junior guards Falu Seck (Washington, D.C.) and Doyin Fadojutimi (Temple Hills, Md.) combined for 37 for Franklin Pierce with Feck at the top of the list with 19.

Bentley, in addition to the strong shooting exhibition, outscored the home team 20-9 from the foul line and dominated the boards, 44-29.

Franklin Pierce forced 18 Falcon turns but managed only 19 points off, most of those coming late. The Ravens shot just .427 and misfired on 21 of 30 attempts from downtown.

Bentley, which completed its first unbeaten November since 2013-14 (7-0), will be back in action Saturday with a 3:30 home game against St. Michael's College.