Nov. 29, 2008
Burlington, Vt. - Vermont's Mike Trimboli and Colin McIntosh connected on three-pointers one minute apart to give the Catamounts a lead they would not relinquish with under five minutes to play and then staved off a Loyola rally to post a 64-62 non-conference victory over the Greyhounds Saturday afternoon at Patrick Gymnasium.
Loyola (2-5) battled back from a 13-point first-half deficit to take its last lead of the game at 54-53 on a put back from sophomore guard Jamal Barney with 5:19 remaining. On the next possession, Trimboli drained a three-pointer to give Vermont (3-2) a 56-54 lead with 5:07 left and, following a Greyhounds turnover, McIntosh connected on his three-pointer with 4:07 left for a 59-54 Catamounts advantage.
The Greyhounds came back again, pulling within two points at 64-62 on a whirling-dervish layup from sophomore guard Brian Rudolph with exactly one minute left. Loyola's defense forced Vermont into a shot-clock violation and got the ball back with 23.8 left. Running down the game clock, the Greyhounds put the ball in the hands of senior guard Marquis Sullivan and his runner from the free-throw line fell short. Junior forward Jawaan Wright had one tip at it with the ball spinning out of the basket and McIntosh secured the defensive rebound to seal the game.
After Wright gave Loyola a 5-4 lead less than three minutes into the game, Vermont would score nine straight and 14 of 18 to grab an 18-9 lead with 12:46 left in the first half as five different Catamounts scored. When Trimboli connected on a pair of free throws with 7:39 remaining, Vermont had its largest lead of the game at 34-21.
Trailing 38-30 at the half, Loyola continued to chip away as the second half opened, eventually knotting the score at 43 with 12:36 remaining on a three-pointer from freshman guard J'hared Hall. The Greyhounds grabbed its first lead since early in the game at 46-45 with 10:35 left on a three-pointer from freshman forward Anthony Winbush. The lead would change hands eight times over the next five minutes, the last time on Trimboli's three-pointer with 5:07 remaining.
The Greyhounds held America East Player of the Year Marqus Blakely to just 12 points and nine rebounds, both totals that led Vermont. Trimboli and McIntosh matched those 12 points and Evan Fjeld added 10 points off the bench.
The bench was the story for the Greyhounds, receiving 35 points led by Sullivan's 19. Hall tallied a career-high 11 in just 12 minutes and Wright scored five with a career-best five blocked shots. Loyola outrebounded the Catamounts 38-33 as Winbush hauled in a career-high 11 to go along with five points, three assists and four steals.
The Greyhounds open conference play on Wednesday when it hosts defending champion Siena in Reitz Arena at 7 o'clock.