Cadets March Past AMCATS, 68-63

Cadets March Past AMCATS, 68-63

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The Anna Maria College men's basketball team dropped a close, 68-63 final to the Cadets of Norwich University in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) action on Thursday evening. The Cadets pick up only their second-ever victory over the AMCATS to improve to 5-8 on the year and 2-4 in the conference. Anna Maria drops to 3-11 overall and to 3-4 against league foes.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

Norwich shot a blistering 62.5% from the floor by making 25-of-40 field goals, while the AMCATS went 22-of-53 for a shooting percentage of 41.5 from the floor. Both teams notched eight baskets from three-point range. The Cadets just barely outrebounded the AMCATS, 28-25.
The AMCATS were led by freshman forward Mike Rapoza (Charlton, Mass.) who notched his second double-double of the week with 23 points and 13 rebounds. Senior guard, David Jean-Louis (Miramar, Fla.) added 15 points and six assists while junior Kenneth Graham (West Haven, Conn.) was second on the team in rebounding with six. 
Cadet junior, Mike Horgervorst did not miss from the floor as he scored 17 points off of an 8-for-8 performance with one free throw. Junior Ryan Booth potted a team-best 21 points with five triples and three assists. Classmate Zygimantas Sirvydas handed out four assists, tying with sophomore Daniel Haimes for the team lead. Haimes also led the way with three steals. 
 
HOW IT HAPPENED

The Cadets rebounded from a sluggish start to capture the win. Down by a game-high nine points only 3:41 into regulation time, Norwich quickly tied the game with a nine-point run that was highlighted by three layups from Hogervorst. With the game tied at 26 with 4:35 to go in the first half, Norwich outscored the AMCATS by a 9-2 margin in the waning minutes. 

Norwich scored on its own basket with 10:14 to go in the second half, cutting the Anna Maria deficit to only one point, 46-45, but Norwich rallied with back-to-back threes from Haimes and Booth to stoke offensive momentum. The AMCATS would not quit, however, and would use a Rapoza layup with 3:59 to go, cutting the Norwich lead to 56-53.

A deep triple from Booth after an Anna Maria turnover created a six-point margin with just under three minutes left. Another trey from Booth would increase the Cadets lead to nine, but the AMCATS would again make things interesting late. A layup made by junior Liam Pickett (Oxford, Mass.) paired with a layup and a free throw by Rapoza with under 30 seconds to play brought the AMCATS within four (67-63) but this was as close as the AMCATS would get. Sirvydas made a free throw for the Cadets with 11 seconds on the clock to clinch the GNAC victory (68-63)

WHAT'S NEXT?

The AMCATS travel to Mount Ida on Saturday, January 14 for a 1:00 p.m. GNAC contest. Norwich hosts Emmanuel (Mass.) on the same day at 1 p.m. in Andrews Hall.