Bears Basketball Fights Off Late Comeback to Sink Maritime

(BROOKLYN, NY)  Przemyslaw Kudla (Brooklyn, NY/St. John's Prep) hit two free throws with 0:08 remaining to give St. Joseph's a 77-76 victory in a non-conference game against SUNY-Maritime on Tuesday evening in the opening game of the women's basketball senior night doubleheader at Brooklyn Technical High School.  Jon Matzelle (Queens, NY/St. Francis Prep), Justin Gist (Brooklyn, NY/Newsome) and Ervin Maddox(Staten Island, NY/St. Peter's) each scored a team-high 14 points.  St. Joseph's improves to 10-12 on the season and Maritime falls to 12-9.

Maritime jumped out to an early lead, leading by as many as eight on two occasions before St, Joseph's drew the game back to even midway through the half.  The teams exchanged the lead eight times in the opening frame until the Bears went on a 8-0 run before halftime to build a six point lead.  A 3-pointer by Andre Cooper from just inside halfcourt at the buzzer cut St. Joseph's lead to three sending them into the lockers with a 40-37 advantage.

The Bears maintained their lead throughout the second half and extended it to as many as 11.  The Privateers staged a late comeback with a 14-2 run to take back the lead with 2:26 to play.  A jumper by Cooper put Maritime up by three with 0:42 remaining.  On the ensuing Bears possession, Donald Coleman (Brooklyn, NY/Nazareth) went to the charity stripe for two free throws.  Coleman hit the first and missed the second but the Bears secured the rebound.  In the scramble, Maddox found Lew Monaco (Staten Island, NY/Msgr. Farrell) in the far left corner for a 3-pointer for his eighth point that put the Bears up one.  The Pioneers reclaimed the lead with two free throws by Kevin Josey and St. Joseph's got the ball back with 0:17 on the clock down again by one.

Coleman received the ball on the right side, made a strong drive to the hoop and was fouled, but was injured on the play which caused Coach Joseph Cocozelloto come on the court.  By rule, since Coleman was attended to, he needed to be substituted out of the game until the next stoppage of play.  This caused some debate between Maritime coach Jody King and the referees as to which team decides who shoots the free throws for the injured player.  The referees ruled in favor of St. Joseph's and Coach Cocozello put in Kudla who sank both free throws to put the Bears up one final time.  With 0:08 left on the clock, Maritime came down court and got two good looks, but neither fell giving St. Joseph's the 77-76 win.

Gist dished out four assists, grabbed four rebounds and had three steals.  Matzelle grabbed six rebounds and added two steals.  Maddox had a trio of assists.  Coleman finished with nine points and a team-high nine rebounds.

Four Pioneers finished in double figures led by double-doubles turned in by Timothy Dougherty (16 points, 13 rebounds) and Giovanni Hurley (12 points, 14 rebounds).

The Bears return to action this weekend where they have three games in three days.  They face Williamson Free Trade on the road on Saturday in a USCAA matchup.  On Sunday, they look to go undefeated in conference play facing Culinary at noon at Brooklyn Technical High School.  On Monday, they close out their home slate, facing New Jersey City University for Senior Night at 7:30 p.m.