ONEONTA, NY--Oneonta State (4-2) sophomore guard Ian Schupp nailed a three from the top of the key with 54.0 seconds remaining to give the Dragons a 69-62 lead over the Williams College Ephs (5-2). The clutch shot would ice the game as the Dragons went on to win by a final score of 75-62.
It was a tough night for the Ephs, who trailed for the entire second half. Following the trend of recent games, Williams struggled from behind the 3-point arc, shooting a meager 4-18 (22.2%).
"Oneonta was more excited to play from the start," said Williams head coach Kevin App. We weren't ready to go. It's a learning experience, albeit one you don't want to go through. Oneonta played with more energy and more passion. We responded a little bit in the second half, but it was too late."
The first few minutes of the game were back and forth as both teams seemed to get easy baskets inside. Good outside shooting by the Dragons and sloppy offense by the Ephs enabled Oneonta to create some separation. With 14:11 left in the first half, Oneonta senior forward Mike McElroy dunked on a fast break to give the Dragons a 15-13 lead, a lead they would not relinquish for the remainder of the game. Oneonta took a 38-28 lead into halftime.
Williams came out firing from deep early in the second half. Junior swingman Daniel Aronowitz hit a three from the top of the key and freshman guard Bobby Casey followed that up with a three of his own. After an Oneonta free throw, Casey hit another jumper to cut the Dragon's lead to 41-38 with 16:12 to play. The Dragons responded with a 7-0 run aided by a couple of turnovers by the Ephs.
After a long fight to get back into the game, Williams made their run with 10:00 to play. Freshman forward Kyle Scadlock finished a layup down low to complete a 7-1 run and cut the score to 55-53.
The Ephs would not get any closer as Oneonta continued to have success on the offensive end.
Dragons senior guard Seth Thomsen's three-pointer with 2:42 remaining gave Oneonta 66-59 lead. Casey cut the lead to 66-62 with a three of his own, only to be outdone by Schupp with just under a minute to play.
"I hope our players understand that we can be beat by anyone. This is the hardest part of the process of succeeding. It's disappointing. Our effort wasn't where it needed to be to win a game on the road, but the good news is that we get to respond on Saturday," said App.
Scadlock and Aronowitz led the Ephs with 16 points each. Casey added 14.
McElroy led the Dragons with 19.
Williams next plays at home on Saturday vs. Springfield College at 4:00 P.M.