RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Despite both senior Jeff Lewis (Sicklerville, N.J./Timber Creek) and sophomore Jay'von Jackson (Plainfield, N.J./St. Mary-Elizabeth) posting double-doubles, the Felician University men's basketball team was defeated by visiting Nyack College, 79-73, in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action on Saturday afternoon at Job Gymnasium.
Lewis turned in Felician career highs of 18 points, 13 rebounds and three blocked shots, while Jackson finished with 17 points and 10 boards. The Golden Falcons (3-5, 1-1 CACC) also received a nine-point, 11-rebound effort from sophomore forward Dee-End McRae (Newark, N.J./Newark Central).
Nyack, however, moved ahead for good on the first possession of the second period. The Warriors had fallen behind, 20-8, after five-plus minutes, with Lewis notching 12 points. But the visitors systematically closed the gap, and a late three-point field goal by Thomas Nolan (Trumbull, Conn./University of Fairfield) sent Nyack into halftime trailing just 38-37.
The Warriors (5-5, 1-2) held the possession arrow to begin the second half, and after Luis Escobar (Pembroke Pines, Fla./Broward College) drained a jump shot, his team never trailed again. The basket jump-started a 12-4 run for Nyack which left it ahead, 49-42, after an Escobar three-pointer with 16:51 to play in regulation time. Both teams then went scoreless for two minutes of game time before a putback by Golden Falcon senior Rachid Shimou (Piscataway, N.J./Piscataway) snapped the spell.
On six occasions during the next 10 minutes, Felician cut its deficit to one possession. But each time, the Warriors scored. On the final occasion, a three by Austin Toomalatai (Carson, Calif./LA Southwest) extended Nyack's spread to 69-63 on its way to its largest advantage of the day, 74-63 at the 2:21 mark.
Each team featured four double-figure scorers, but three of Nyack's came off the bench. The Warriors' non-starters outscored Felician's, 34-4. Sophomore Joel Bailey (Saint Catherine, Jamaica/Our Saviour Lutheran) totaled 19 points, seven rebounds and four assists to pace the visitors.
Shimou finished with 13 points. Felician freshman Nas Amos (Newark, N.J./East Side) tallied 12 points and five assists.
Felician is idle for the next 10 days. On Dec. 17, the Golden Falcons host Concordia (N.Y.) College in CACC action at 8 p.m.