Men’s basketball look to finish season strong

CJ Haddad

Journal Staff

When the Suffolk University men’s basketball team steps onto the court February 2 versus Johnson & Wales, they’ll know exactly what they’re up against, and the importance of the game.

With only five games remaining in a season where time is now the Rams only enemy, a strong finish to a mediocre season can bring this team back to life in the standings.

All of these five games will be matchups against conference teams and can play a vital role in a postseason ticket. Currently the Rams have an overall record of 8-12 and are 5-8 against Great Northeast Athletic Conference teams.

Suffolk is in eighth place in their conference, and of those seven teams that post a better record, five of them have 11 losses or more.

Head coach Adam Nelson and his roster has put fate into their own hands. It is quite likely that if the Rams can find a way to put together a successful final stretch of the season, they can emerge from this season with a possible third place finish in the GNAC.

As of late, it can be said that the team has found a spark after dropping four straight losses, three of those to conference opponents.

Since January 21, the Rams have won three out of their last five games and are pulling up on the throttle to save themselves from the free fall of the previous games.

The first of the three wins came in a home win versus a Norwich (5-13). Matt Pepdjonovic emerged with a double-double, dropping 19 points and hauling in an impressive 23 rebounds. Junior guard Chris Torres led all scorers with 21, and also collected six rebounds.

Suffolk then decided to pick up right where they left off in Regan Gymnasium with another home victory against Rivier (4-13). This time it was junior forward Colin Halpin at the top of the scoring sheet with 21 points going 8-13 from the floor.

The Rams third straight victory, and possibly most impressive of the season, came on the road versus Lasell College (8-11). A lack-luster performance found the home team up by ten at half. But after Suffolk outscored Lasell 58-32 in the second, the Rams took home a road win by a final of 92-76.

Pepdjonovic has a quite impressive stat line, reading 31 points, 18 rebounds (6 offensive), and 6 blocks. Halpin also had another outstanding game with 29 points, 11 rebounds, and led all Rams in minutes played.

The following game versus an impressive and second place St. Joseph’s team (13-4), put a halt on the Rams current win streak. Suffolk dropped the road game by a final of 79-55, creating a 15 point deficit at half that they could not pull out of. Freshman Matt Powers did come off the bench and play well, scoring 11 points and going 3-4 from 3- point range.

On Monday night, Suffolk lost to Albertus Magnus by a final of 110-70. Torres had a tremendous game for the Rams, as he dropped 20 points and had rebounds.

Hopefully in the remaining games the Rams can pick themselves up and finish strong and push for a top three spot in the GNAC conference.

The Rams will play Johnson & Wales Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in the Regan Gymnasium.