NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. – The Westminster College men’s basketball team upset Presidents’ Athletic Conference (PAC) foe Saint Vincent College, 87-80, at home on Saturday.
The Titans, winners of four-straight – the current longest winning streak in the conference, advanced to 9-13 overall and 7-6 in the PAC. The Bearcats, who sit atop the PAC standings, suffered their first conference loss of the season (11-1) and dropped to 18-3 overall.
Westminster jumped out early to a 5-0 lead. Saint Vincent answered with a 7-0 run with 16:45 on the clock. Two ties ensued with the latest at 11-11 with 12:54 on the clock. Titan sophomore Isaac Stamatiades (Elkridge, MD / Avalon) put the Titans in front, 13-11, with a layup and Westminster maintained its lead for the remainder of the half. The Titans led, 37-31, at intermission.
The Titans had their largest lead of the game of 19 points four times in the second half, with the latest one coming at 64-45 with 9:12 remaining. The Bearcats battled back and mustered a 23-2 run to take a 68-66 lead with 57 seconds left in regulation. A clutch jumper by junior Lloyd Chatman (Columbus, OH / Reynoldsburg) with 32 seconds remaining tied the game at 68. A Titan three-point attempt at the buzzer came up short, forcing overtime. In extra minutes, Saint Vincent took a 70-68 lead after Shemar Bennett made a pair of free throws. The Titans regained the lead and never lost it, following an 8-0 run (which was ignited by back-to-back threes by Stamatiades) and led 76-70 with 2:52 to play. The Bearcats cut the Titans’ lead to 76-74 with 1:47 left, but that would be the closest Saint Vincent would get for the remainder of the contest, thanks to clutch threes by senior Austin Armwood (Columbus, OH / Westerville North) and sophomore Clay O’Dell (Vienna, OH / Kennedy Catholic). Armwood also made three late free throws to help seal the Titan victory.
Stamatiades notched his third career double-double, including a team-high 19 points (with clutch threes in overtime) and a game- and career-high 16 rebounds, to go along with a game-high two blocks and a pair of steals. Armwood and junior Dylan O’Hara (Girard, OH / Girard) also had double-digit points with 18 and 16, respectively. O’Hara added seven rebounds and a game- and career-high four steals. Junior Lloyd Chatman (Columbus, OH / Reynoldsburg) added nine points and also tied a career-high with a game-high five assists. Sophomore Daniel Ritter (North Lima, OH / South Range) had six rebounds and five points.
Westminster outshot Saint Vincent, 41.6% (32-77) to 41.5% (27-65) and dominated the glass with a 53-35 advantage in rebounds. The Titans made a season-high 13 threes by seven different Titans, led by Stamatiades with a game- and career-high four threes (4-for-7), while O’Hara tied a career-high with three threes (3-for-3).
The Titans are back on the court, Wednesday, February 6 at Geneva College with a tip-off of 7:30 p.m.