WORCESTER, Mass. – The Worcester State University men's basketball team pushed past the MCLA Trailblazers 80-54 in Saturday afternoon play at Lancer Gymnasium in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) contest.
With the win, the Lancers improve to 6-13 and 4-3 in the MASCAC, while the Trailblazers fall to 2-16 and 0-7 in conference play.
Leading the Lancers' offensive effort was senior guard Aaron Anniballi (Milford, Mass.) with 15 points and junior guard Corey Gatta (Sturbridge, Mass.) who registered 14 points, 12 of which were from 3-pointers. Freshman guard Cal Howes (Maynard, Mass.) also registered double-digits scoring 11 points, going 3-of-5 in 3-pointers. Paul Brooks (Arlington, Mass.) led the team in rebounds, earning nine boards while teammates Jeremy Bacon (Milford, Mass.) and Jamal Mustapha (Worcester, Mass.) tallied seven and six rebounds, respectively.
The Trailblazers were led by Keiland Cross (Pittsfield, Mass.) who tallied 12 points and seven rebounds. Also pitching in for MCLA's offense were junior forwards Joe Wiggins (Pittsfield, Mass.) and Nolan Bird (Clarksburg, Mass.) each tallying 10 points. Joe Murray (Cairo, N.Y.) chipped in offensively and defensively for the Trailblazers, tallying nine points and crashing seven boards.
Worcester State took the lead early as Brooks made a layup and Gatta followed with a triple, putting the Lancers ahead 5-0 just two minutes in. Shortly after, Trailblazer's Cross sunk a 3-pointer and teammate Wiggins was fouled and tallied two more points at the free-throw line, knotting up the score 5-5. The Trailblazers took the lead five minutes in when Bird made a jump shot, giving MCLA a 7-5 advantage over the Lancers, which would prove to be their only lead of the game. Just 10 seconds later, Worcester State's Gatta scored a 3-pointer, putting the Lancers ahead 11-10. Worcester State maintained the lead for the remainder of the half, which concluded with a 47-35 Lancer advantage over the Trailblazers.
Worcester State dominated the second half of the game, holding MCLA to just 19 points, while they put up 33 for the 80-54 win.
Worcester State shot 47.8% from the field throughout the game and 40.0% beyond the arc. The Trailblazers stood at 29.0% from the field, and 75.0% in free throws.
Next up, the Lancers will travel to Salem State for a Wednesday night game at 5:30 p.m, while the Trailblazers will travel to Westfield State on the same day.
Release written by Alyssa Hill | Worcester State Sports Information Graduate Assistant