Men’s Basketball Falls to NYU in Tip-Off Tournament Championship Game, 86-82

Senior guard Mike McGuire scored 20 points in Western New England's 86-82 loss to NYU on Sunday. (Photo by Chris Marion)
Senior guard Mike McGuire scored 20 points in Western New England's 86-82 loss to NYU on Sunday. (Photo by Chris Marion)

NEW YORK, N.Y. – The Western New England University men's basketball team fell to New York University, 86-82, in overtime on Sunday afternoon in the championship game of the NYU Tip-Off Tournament at Hunter College's Sportsplex.

Top Performers
Western New England was led by senior guard Mike McGuire (Garden City, N.Y.) and junior guard Alex Sikorski (Rocky Hill, Conn.), who scored 20 points each. Sikorski also recorded six rebounds and two assists while McGuire totaled seven boards, three assists and two steals. Senior forward Tim Reilly (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) added 17 points for the Golden Bears.

NYU senior forward Jimmy Martinelli (Glenview, Ill.) turned in a double-double performance with a game-high 25 points on 10-of-19 shooting, 11 rebounds and two assists to pace the Violets. Sophomore forward Nick Macarchuk (Alamo, Calif.) was also a key contributor with 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including 4-of-7 from three-point distance, to go with eight boards and five assists. Senior guard Ethan Feldman (New York, N.Y.) produced 18 points, three rebounds and three assists.

Game Review
Reilly scored Western New England's first seven points as the Golden Bears led 7-4 a minute and a half into the contest, before the Violets pulled ahead on a Martinelli triple at the 16:55 mark.

NYU remained in front until senior guard Cole Eiber (Albertson, N.Y.) knocked down a jumper to tie the score 23-23 with 9:44 remaining in the opening half.

With the score still tied (29-29) just over three minutes later, NYU put together an 8-0 run that was bookended by three-pointers from Martinelli and Macarchuk to claim a 37-29 advantage with less than five minutes on the clock.

The Golden Bears utilized ten points from Sikorski down the stretch to tie the score again at 43-43 in the final minute of play, before junior forward Bobby Hawkinson (Frankfort, Ill.) gave the Violets a 45-43 edge with a jumper just before the break.

The lead changed hands several times early in the second half, with NYU establishing a 54-50 advantage on a Martinelli triple at the 15:28 mark.

Western New England eventually regained the lead (55-54) when Sikorski connected from long range 2:20 later, and the Golden Bears put together an 11-0 run overall to open up a 61-54 cushion with 11:53 to play.

Western New England led by as much as ten (69-59) following a Tavitian triple with 8:10 on the clock, but NYU posted a 14-0 run over the next seven minutes to pull ahead 73-69 with just 1:26 remaining.

After the Golden Bears scored the next five points to take their final lead (74-73) of regulation, NYU freshman guard Miles Somerville (Bowie, Md.) was fouled with three seconds to play and made 1-of-2 free throws to send the contest to overtime.

Western New England opened the extra period strong and led 78-74 with layups by Sikorski and sophomore Kenny Flynn (Dudley, Mass.). The Golden Bears were still ahead (80-77) after senior guard Nick DeGennaro (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) connected on a jumper with 2:47 left in overtime, but a Macarchuk three-pointer sparked a decisive 7-0 run for NYU that Western New England was unable to overcome.

Notes
• Western New England shot 43.4% from the field while NYU connected at a 45.6% clip.
• The Violets held a 48-33 rebounding advantage.
• Following his 20-point performance, McGuire is within 36 of reaching the 1,000-point mark for his career.

Up Next
Western New England (4-3) will be back on the road Tuesday night at Emmanuel, while NYU (3-3) returns to action on Sunday at Rosemont.