WORCESTER, Mass. - Senior Brendan Degnan (Narragansett, R.I./Bishop Hendricken) led four players in double-figures with 13 points as the Wheaton College men's basketball team picked up a 64-57 win over Worcester State University in non-conference action Thursday night.
Freshman Eddie Capstick (Worcester, Mass./Marianapolis Prep) chipped in with 12 points and seven boards for the Lyons (9-11), who snapped a five-game losing skid and surpassed last season's win total. Senior Anthony Weeks (Fitchburg, Mass./Worcester Academy) and sophomore Will Bayliss (Manchester, N.H./Tilton Academy) each scored 11 points for Wheaton.
The Lyons posted one of their better shooting efforts of the season, knocking down 46 percent of their shots (25-of-55) while holding WSU to just 34 percent shooting (22-of-65). Wheaton also outrebounded the Lancers 42-36 behind Capstick's seven and 11 from junior Cliften Desravines (Somerville, Mass./Taft School).
Wheaton connected on 48 percent of its shots in the first half and carried a 37-24 lead into halftime. Bayliss led the Lyons with nine points on four-of-five shooting while Capstick came off the bench and scored eight points in 11 minutes. The Lancers, meanwhile, connected on just nine of their 31 field goal attempts (29 percent) and were led by sophomore Mike Gitten's (Ucansville, Conn./Montville) nine points.
Worcester State opened the second half on a 22-9 run to tie the game at 46 with nine minutes remaining. Junior Monte Goodwin (Boston, Mass./Belmont) and sophomore Robert Hunter (St. Louis, Mo./Normandy) each scored six points during the run while Gittens had a pair of baskets. The Lancers took the lead three times down the stretch and led by two before a layup by Weeks tied the game at 55 with 2:52 on the clock.
Less than one minute later, Degnan drained a three to give Wheaton a three-point edge at 58-55. Goodwin got the Lancers back to within one with a basket with 1:45 to go, but Capstick answered with a layup to push Wheaton's lead to three (60-57). Worcester State missed its next two shots, and Degnan sank a pair of free throws with 27 seconds remaining to make it a two-possession game. On the next possession, Gittens missed a three, forcing WSU to foul to stop the clock, and Capstick buried his two free throws to seal the win.
Hunter finished the night with 14 points and a game-high 15 boards for the Lancers while Gittens went for 13 points and senior Frank Stephenson (Fall River, Mass./Durfee) recorded 11 points, six rebounds and four steals. For Wheaton, senior Shawn Daily (Mount Vernon, N.Y./Mount Saint Michael Academy) had six rebounds and three blocks in 20 minutes.
Wheaton returns to action on Wednesday when it hosts WPI at 7:30 p.m. The Lancers (6-15) entertain MCLA Saturday at 5:30 p.m.