MANCHESTER, N.H. – Sophomore Rodney Sanders (Linden, N.J.) tallied 15 points and nine rebounds to lead Southern New Hampshire University to a 62-53 men's basketball victory over Holy Family University Saturday afternoon at the SNHU Fieldhouse. The Penmen improve to 2-1, while the Tigers suffer their first defeat of the season and fall to 3-1 overall.
Sanders finished 7-17 from the floor and led three Penmen in double figures. Aleksandar Dobrovic (Podgorica, Montenegro) was 6-7 at the free throw line and totaled 12 points and eight rebounds, while Elijah Bonsignore (Felton, Del.) contributed 11 points and seven rebounds. Phillip Tripodakis (Athens, Greece) was 3-5 behind the arc and finished with nine points.
Ervin Ezell led Holy Family with 19 points while Alberto Muonz finished with 11 points and eight rebounds.
Southern New Hampshire led 33-28 at halfime and opened up a 16-point cushion, 53-37, following a three by Mike Stys (Hooksett, N.H.) with 12:14 remaining. The Penmen led 56-40 when Holy Family scored 10 unanswered points to pull within six, 56-50, with just under eight minutes to go on a pair of Ezell free throws.
Both teams went cold as neither side scored until a putback by Sanders with 2:52 left gave the Penmen a 58-50 lead. Munoz knocked down a three with 2:05 left to make it 58-53, but the Tigers got no closer as Southern New Hampshire made all four of its free throw attempts in the final minute.
Southern New Hampshire led wire-to-wire and scored the game's first eight points before Holy Family used a 10-3 run to pull within one with 14:33 to go in the first half. An 11-2 run capped by a Sanders layup gave SNHU a 24-14 lead with just under six minutes to go, and a pair of free throws by Max Taylor (Shokan, N.Y.) with 4:34 left gave SNHU its largest first half lead, 29-18. Holy Family closed the half on a 10-4 run and a Munoz three with six seconds to go made it a 33-28 lead at halftime.
The Penmen shot just 30% (18-60) for the contest but went 18-21 at the free throw line, while Holy Family went 10-15 at the charity stripe. SNHU limited the Tigers to 34% shooting for the game and outrebounded the guests 45-35, including a 17-10 advantage on the offensive glass.
SNHU opens Northeast-10 play on Wednesday night when it hosts Saint Anselm College in a 7:30 Northeast-10 contest at the SNHU Fieldhouse.
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