WASHINGTON – The 2014-15 Gallaudet University men's basketball team tied a school mark that has stood for nearly a hundred years as the Bison defeated Wells College, 66-54, before a Senior Day crowd of 434 in the Field House.
Gallaudet is now tied with the 1916-17 team that won eight straight games in a season. GU (15-5) inches closer to the program record for wins in a season (17) and clinched second place in the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) South Division with today's victory. The Bison (11-3 NEAC) can still win the South Division outright but will need some help, as Lancaster Bible College is currently 11-1 in the standings. The lone loss came against GU back on Jan. 31. The two teams will face each other in Lancaster, Pa., on Friday, Feb. 20.
The Bison took a 24-21 lead into the locker room at halftime and broke open the closely contested game with an 11-1 run early in the second half. Wells (5-15, 5-7 NEAC) could only get within nine points the rest of the way as the Bison coasted to their 15th win this season.
Sophomore Joshua McGriff (Somerset, N.J.) came off the bench to record his fourth double-double of the season as he had 19 points and 10 rebounds and blocked four shots. Junior guard Trey Gordon (Talladega, Ala.), the leading scorer in the NEAC, poured in 18 points while sophomore guard Raymond Nelson (Riverside, Calif.) netted 17 and made three assists and three boards.
The game marked Senior Day for two seniors as Ben Coleman (St. Paris, Ohio) and Anton Jackson (Detroit, Mich.) were recognized prior to the start of the game with their families present. The seniors, both four-year letterwinners, started the game and logged over 24 minutes each. Jackson scored six points and three rebounds in his final regular-season home game. He also had a nifty behind the back pass to McGriff for a slam dunk at the 11:21 mark in the second half. Coleman had a team-high five assists and was second on the team with six rebounds. The Bison controlled the post with a 40-16 scoring advantage in the paint.
GU, ranked No. 4 in Division III for field-goal percentage defense (36.7 percent), held Wells to 31.6 percent (18 of 57). The shooting performance by the Express is over eight percentage points below their season average. Darius Smith led Wells with 13 points, five rebounds and three assists while Joe Walton had a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds off the bench.
This is the third time in program history that a Bison men's basketball team has won eight straight games but only the second time it has happened in one season. The 1928-29 team won its final two games before the 1929-30 team won the first six games of its season.
GU will look for a program best ninth straight win on Saturday, Feb. 14, when it travels to Wilson College (3-15, 2-12 NEAC) for a 3 p.m. conference game. The Bison defeated the Phoenix, 65-60, back on Jan. 21 to start the current win streak.