WASHINGTON – The Gallaudet University men's basketball team ended its regular-season schedule here Sunday in a riveting game in the Field House against North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) opponent Cazenovia College. The win looked questionable at the half but the Bison never gave up, came back strong in the second half, and earned a 76-73 victory in the closing seconds on Senior Day.
With just two minutes and 45 seconds left in the game, Cazenovia (11-14, 9-8 NEAC) tied the game at 69 after trailing by as much as 11 points just three minutes prior. The Wildcats took a four-point lead, 73-69 on an Avery Wilmore (12 points, 13 assists) layup at the 1:26 mark. Senior Trey Gordon (Talladega, Ala.) made a jump shot on the next possession as Gallaudet (17-7, 14-4 NEAC) closed the lead to two, 73-71. Wilmore missed a layup and committed a foul as Gallaudet took a timeout with 54 seconds left.
Out of the timeout, GU made sure to get the ball in the hands of Gordon, who was camped beyond the 3-point arc in the corner of the court. He threw up a 3-pointer, which missed, but he was fouled by Wilmore. Gordon made all three free throws to give GU the 74-73 lead.
Cazenovia turned the ball over on the baseline and fouled sophomore Andy Cruz (Bronx, N.Y.) and sent him to the foul line where he made two free throws as GU led 76-73.
The Wildcats had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds as Wilmore and Michael DeLuca (16 points) threw up 3-point shots but neither found the bottom of the net as Gallaudet escaped with the victory.
Gordon led the team with 25 points, six rebounds, and three assists. Junior center Joshua McGriff (Somerset, N.J.) and junior guard Raymond Nelson (Riverside, Calif.) each had five rebounds and added 15 points and 11 points, respectively.
Cazenovia had four players score in double digits, led by senior guard Keith Caiello with 22 points.
Gallaudet took an early lead in the first half and held an 11-point advantage, 19-8, before Cazenovia responded with a 15-0 run, in a four-minute span, to take a 30-24 lead. The Wildcats went into halftime up 35-27.
Renewed and re-energized after the break the Bison stampeded back and regained control of the game. Gordon and fellow senior Todd Bonheyo (Frederick, Md.) made back-to-back 3-pointers and McGriff made a quick layup and got fouled on the play to erase Cazenovia's eight-point lead. GU led 42-38 before Caiello made a 3-pointer at the 16:33 mark in the second half.
- Bonheyo and senior Brandon Holsworth (Beal City, Mich.) added eight points each
- Five Bison had five rebounds, including McGriff, Nelson, Bonheyo, Cruz and Shawn Harrington (Frederick, Md.)
- The Bison outscored the Wildcats 30-16 inside the paint
- GU scored 20 points off of 19 Wildcat turnovers
- This is Gallaudet's closes win of the season
- GU made a season best 10 3-pointers
- The Bison have recorded 20 or more assists in five games
Four players were honored today for Senior Day. These players have dedicated much of their time and efforts to the men's basketball program and will be greatly missed.
#22 BRANDON HOLSWORTH
This is Holsworth's first and only season on the men's basketball team where he has started 18 of the 20 games he has played. He has totaled 134 points, 63 rebounds, 21 assists and 20 steals.
#23 RAYMOND NELSON
In the past two seasons, Nelson has started 29 of the 41 games played. He has totaled 561 points, 149 assists, 124 rebounds, 74 steals and 15 blocks.
#5 TODD BONHEYO
Bonheyo is a three-year letter winner where he has started 43 of the 69 games he has played. He has tallied 329 points, 227 rebounds, 215 assists and 74 steals. This year he was named to the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District First Team and he is a NEAC Scholar-Athlete honoree.
#25 TREY GORDON
Gordon is a four-year letter winner where he has started 65 of 87 games played. He has tallied 1,177 points, 374 rebounds, 223 three-pointers, 101 assists and 75 steals.
Gordon became Gallaudet's only second College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-America honoree for men's basketball last season. He was named to the NEAC All-Conference First Team last season and the D3hoops.com all-region third team. This year, he was picked for a second straight time to CoSIDA's Academic All-District team. He is also a two-time NEAC Scholar-Athlete honoree.
The Bison will host the quarterfinal round of the NEAC tournament against Penn St.-Berks on Tuesday, Feb. 23, at 6 p.m.