New London, CT—Clutch free throw shooting down the stretch helped the Williams College Ephs (14-8) secure a 70-67 victory over the Connecticut College Camels (12-10). Junior swingman Daniel Aronowitz stole the show in the second half netting 25 of his 27 points i the final 20 minutes to help mount a comeback, after Williams trailed by 8 at the half. With the victory, the Ephs move to 4-4 in conference play, while the Camels fall to 3-5.
With a top four seed basically out of the reach for teams, both the Ephs and the Camels were playing mostly to gain some momentum heading into the final weekend of NESCAC regular season play. Williams lost on a last second shot to Wesleyan on Friday. The Camels had lost four in a row entering today's game, including close losses to Tufts and Wesleyan.
Playing on its home court for the final time this season, Connecticut College surged ahead in the first half. The Ephs struggled to shoot in the first half, but part of that should be attributed to the Camels' smothering defense. Since Williams' offense heavily relies on outside shooting, the Ephs were only able to put up 22 points in the first half. The was game tied at 12 with just over 11 minutes remaining in the half, but the Camels would go on a 10-2 run, which included back to back threes by freshman David Labossiere and sophomore Sean McNally. The Ephs would cut the deficit to as little as four, but the Camels closed out the half on a strong note, taking a 33-25 lead at the break.
The Camels shot a mediocre 11-31 (35.5%) from the field, but made 4 of 10 three-point attempts in addition to a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line. Williams shot 8-24 (33.3%) from the field and made only 4 of 8 free throw attempts. No player on either team had more than five points in the half.
Willliams opened up the second half on a 5-0 run to cut Conn. College's lead to 33-30, but the Camels would respond with a 6-0 run to take a nine-point lead, their largest of the game. Both teams shot much better in the second half, especially from long range. Hot shooting and a significant edge on the boards helped the Camels maintain a single-digit lead throughout the half.
Junior Daniel Aronowitz made a layup with 7:51 to play that pulled the Ephs to within 2 at 55-53. However, the Camels responded with a 5-0 run to extend their lead back to 7. The Eph would once again battle back and Aronowitz drilled a three with 5:22 remaining to make it 60-59 in favor of the Camels. With 2:12 remaining, Aronowitz again came up huge for the Ephs and tied the game at 64 on a layup. As they seemed to do all game, the Camels responded as Tyler Rowe drilled a three to put them back on top. After two free throws Aronowitz, the Ephs once again found themselves trailing by just one. Sophmore guard Cole Teal made two free throws with 47.0 seconds remaining to give Williams a 68-67 lead. It marked their first lead of the second half. Camels' sophomore Isaiah Robinson missed the potential game winning shot with 8.0 seconds left. Aronowitz secured the rebound, and in turn the victory for Williams.
Aronowitz led the Ephs with 27 points and 9 rebounds. Freshman James Heskett 14 points on 4-8 from three-point range.
Sophomore guard Lee Messier led the Camels with 16 points.
Williams next plays vs. Tufts on Friday, February 12th at 7:00 P.M. in Chandler Gym.