Worcester, Mass. – Visiting Clark University shot a blistering 57 percent from the field in the first half enroute to a 66-54 win over Worcester-area rival Anna Maria on Tuesday afternoon in non-league men's basketball action.
Score: Clark University 66, Anna Maria 54
Records: Clark University 3-1, Anna Maria 0-5
Location: Fuller Activities Center, Paxton, Mass.
The game was tied early on at 11-11 when the Cougars surged ahead for good with a 10-0 run that featured four points from David Mercier (Milford, Mass.) and baskets from Adam Converse (Woodstock, Conn.) and Brendan Kittredge (Clinton, Mass.).
That lead grew to 14 at 34-20 when Joe Atkinson (Milford, Mass.) connected on a three-pointer with 4:32 to go in the half and the Scarlet and White went into halftime ahead by 16 following an inside hoop from Lamar Berk (Saint Augustine, Fla.) with 30 seconds left in the half.
Anna Maria tried to stay within arm's reach as Tanner Jakola scored and Bobby Perette knocked down a three-pointer but with less than ten minutes to play Clark had actually increased its halftime edge when a Luca McCormick (Bradenton, Fla.) three-pointer made the score 53-36.
Clark's advantage maxed out at 19 on a couple of occasions, including on a Mercier hoop and again on free throws from McCormick.
The AMCATS made a push and got as close as 12 following free throws from Mike Rapoza with a little more than four minutes to play, but the Cougars made enough free throws of their own down the stretch and Josh St. Fort (Milton, Mass.) sealed the contest with his layup with less than a minute to play.
Inside The Numbers:
Clark forced 17 Anna Maria turnovers, which they converted into 16 points and even though they missed nine free throws, they still held a 16-6 edge over the AMCATS from the charity stripe.
Atkinson paced the Scarlet and White attack with 13 points and ten rebounds, while both McCormick and Mercier each totaled 11 points and Kittredge contributed nine points and six rebounds off the bench.
Perette finished with a team-best 13 points for the hosts, who got a monster double-double of 12 points a 20 rebounds from Rapoza – just a freshman.
A Special Moment:
Prior to the game the AMCATS and the Cougars took a minute to remember a beloved member of both the Anna Maria College community and the Clark University communities. Pat Oroszko, who passed away over the summer after a valiant battle with cancer, is a Clark graduate and served as an assistant coach at both institutions. The teams both wore shirts dedicated to his name that presented the hashtag: #foreverremembered during warm-ups and the Clark coaching staff wore them throughout the game.
The Cougars are off until next Tuesday, November 29 when they visit Connecticut College for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff.