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Bison comeback falls short at St. Mary's (Md.) in season opener

Gallaudet men's basketball player Andy Cruz holds the basketball with two hands around his head. There is a defender to the left of Andy.

ST. MARY'S CITY, Md. - The 2017-18 Gallaudet University men's basketball season got underway here Wednesday night as the Bison dropped a non-conference game, 80-75, to St. Mary's (Md.) College.

Gallaudet (0-1) ran out of time in its second half comeback as the Bison outscored St. Mary's 51-42 in the final 20 minutes of play. The Seahawks (1-0) led 38-24 at halftime. The Bison shot 43.2 percent from the field in the second half.

Sophomore guard Noah Valencia (Riverside, Calif.) led the Bison with 20 points, four rebounds and two steals. Valencia made one of his three 3-pointers at the end of the game to cut the Seahawk lead to five. Freshman guard Preston Kelly (Fishers, Ind.) added 19 points in his Bison debut. Kelly made four rebounds, four assists and three steals as he made 7 of 9 shots from the free-throw line. 

Senior forward Andy Cruz (Bronx, N.Y.) tallied 16 points, six rebounds, three steals and two blocks down in the post. Cruz made half of GU's blocks and was second on the team in rebounds.

St. Mary's had four players in double figures led by Spencer Schultz , who poured in 15 points and 10 rebounds. The Seahawk bench added 42 points in the win.


  • Junior guard Jawaun Jackson (Downey, Calif.) scored nine points, five rebounds, two steals
  • Freshman center Lance Wood (Fishers, Ind.) added six points, 10 rebounds in his debut
  • Gallaudet shot 35.4 percent from the field (23 of 65)
  • The Bison scored 26 points off 22 Seahawk turnovers
  • SMC held a 43-39 advantage in rebounds and outscored GU in the paint, 48-28
  • GU made 12 steals in the game
  • The Bison were 22-for-35 (62.9 percent) from the free-throw line

Gallaudet will fly to the Northwest for a three-game road trip against some of the top teams in that region including a showdown with Whitman College the No. 1 team in Division III. GU will face Whitworth University on Friday, Nov. 17, at 11 p.m. (EST). The Pirates went 23-5 last season.